Sat, Nov 23rd, 2013

MPs Cry Over Cheap ZTE Phone Bribes


Parliament has refuted allegations that its members were bribed with cheap ZTE phones. According to the Deputy Chairman of Parliament’s Committee on Communications, Ahmed Ibrahim, the claims that Parliamentarians were bribed with cheap ZTE phones to approve a contract between the Chinese phone company and the government of Ghana was untrue.

ZTE phonesAhmed Ibrahim said the phones were not gifts or bribes to influence the MPs but were rather security gadgets given out as entitlements to the MPs.

Media reports making the rounds that the MPs had been given 275 Chinese ZTE phones in a bid to approve a contract that would enable ZTE acquire for the government of Ghana, security gadgets to provide information for the purposes of monitoring and responding to security emergencies.

However, Daniel Nii Quartei Titus-Glover, expressed shock over allegations that the phones were to bribe them.

He described the phones as cheap insisting that the MPs were ready to return them to the Chinese company.

The Director of the Parliamentary Centre, Dr. Rashid Dramani, condemned the action by the MPs.

Describing the decision by the MPs to accept the phones as “big insult” on Ghana’s Parliament, Dr. Dramani said the MPs shouldn’t have accepted the phones, especially when they were to approve a contract involving the same company.

But speaking on Asempa FM’s Ekosii-Sen programme Friday, Ahmed Ibrahim said allegations that the MPs were bribed with the phones could only be the work of mischief.

He explained that the government of Ghana through the communication ministry, already had a contract with the company, dating back to 2006, which mandated the company to supply security phones to senior government officials, police and army officials.

According to him thousands of such phones were supplied and distributed to ministers of state and security officials.

The MPs wondered why they were not included in the first delivery given that they were also prone tosecurity attacks.

The company, he indicated, was therefore charged to provide all the MPs with the security phones but that did not in any way influence the MPs decision on the company’s pending contract before Parliament.

On the contrary he said Parliament rather threw out the initial contract with ZTE company because it was not in favour of Ghana.

According to him, the law makers only approved the contract after the Chinese company had gone back to amend the proposal.

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MPs Cry Over Cheap ZTE Phone Bribes