The Deputy Finance Minister has justified the payment of GH¢32 million to Sir David Adjaye and Associates for consultancy services on the National Cathedral project.
John Kumah said the amount was paid from the Office of the President’s budget.
As a result, he said the payment was legal.
“Even though it may not be captured as a budget item because it is not under any specific MDA, it can form part of government expenditure as long as we have captured it in the budget that we were going to provide seed funding,” he said.
“It is already a budget item provided for in the [Office of the President] budget that was used for that purpose, which is legal,” he added.
The Deputy Minister made this known in an interview with Accra-based Citi TV on Monday, June 6.
The issue of the payment was first made public by the Member of Parliament for North Tongu.
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa said this was authorised by President Akufo-Addo.
In a social media post, the outspoken legislator said he will be releasing more information on the project.
“Documents from the Office of the President confirm that in 2021 alone, Prez Akufo-Addo authorised an astonishing GHC32million of taxpayer funds to be paid to Sir David Adjaye & Associates Ltd for consultancy on his National Cathedral project.”
“GHS57million so far; more to come” Mr. Ablakwa tweeted.
The project, over the last few days, has been a subject of controversy following the release of GHC25 million to the National Cathedral Secretariat as additional seed money for the project from the government.
The release has led to disagreements between the Minority Caucus in Parliament and the government.
Whereas the Minority maintains that the release is not budgeted for, the government says otherwise.
The Minority said it is not even aware of the procurement processes that were followed in the release of the funds.