13 September 2017

Ghana: U.S.$150 Million Lost to Corruption At Tema Port Yearly - Govt

About $150 million is lost to corruption at the Tema Port alone every year, Information Minister Mustapha Hamid has revealed, saying the newly-introduced paperless system of collecting revenue at the port is meant to stem the haemorrhaging.

"Look, at the Tema Port alone, the experts tell us that every year we lose 150 million dollars at the Tema Harbour alone to corruption and underhand dealings. $150 million go into people's private pockets so that is why we are introducing the paperless system of working at the port, once that works then you have blocked all the holes," Mr Hamid told Class91.3FM's Kwesi Parker-Wilson in an interview on Tuesday, 12 September on the sidelines of the official launch of the government's flagship Free Senior High School programme.

According to him, such monies could be channeled into funding the social intervention programme which came into implementation on Monday, 11 September.

Meanwhile, Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has revealed that revenue collected at the ports has increased by 56% within just a week of the introduction of the paperless system.

"The results are amazing; we just looked at data this morning - first week of collections under the paperless system in September this year compared to last year's first week of collections in September 2016 - and collections have gone up by 56 percent: from around GHS130 million to GHS230 million in one week."

Dr Bawumia said some people who have been profiteering from intentional delays in clearing goods at the ports, attempted sabotaging the new paperless system introduced at Tema to help clear good in four hours.

"On September 1, we launched the paperless [system], but, of course, not without attempts to actually derail the process because it's hurting a lot of people who were making free money and people who used to take two weeks to clear a container after one day of delay were protesting," Dr Bawumia said at an orientation ceremony for national service personnel at the National Communications Authority.

"Are you protesting the system or something else?" he wondered.

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