May 27, 2024

Joy FM Journalist’s car boot company grabbed US$240, 000 from Aker Energy in 2021 And US$125,000 IN 2022

 

The Herald has landed Aker Energy’s contracts awarded in 2021 with more evidence that hundreds of thousands of United States dollars, was paid to ExConsult Media, a private company owned by the head of the Political Desk of Accra-based Joy FM, Evans Mensah.

ExConsult Media, is not known to have a fixed address where its services could be procured. It is operated from the car boot of the journalist yet The Herald’s findings have established it is heavily cashing in on Ghana’s Local Content arrangements in the oil industry under the supervision of Petroleum Commission led by Egbert Failbille.

In 2021 alone, ExConsult Media got paid the sum of US$240,431.47 by Aker Energy for some five contracts it executed on behalf of the Norwegian company. This amount is different from the US$125, 281.42 it got paid for media services it rendered in 2022 which The Herald reported as submitted to the Petroleum Commission.

It remains unclear, if ExConsult Media is registered to provide services under the Petroleum Commission. The payments will eventually be surcharged on Ghana’s share of the oil revenue.

The first item on the list as payment made to ExConsult Media, is an amount of US$70,722.82 as “provision of Public Relations and Marketing Services”. The date on it was vaguely given as 1st January 2021 to December 2021, but claimed to have gone through a competitive bidding process per the country’s procurement laws.

The second payment paid to Mr Mensah’s ExConsult Media was US$28,176.36. It was paid on May 28, 2021 and the process towards getting the deal was described as competitive. Strangely, the ownership of the company was described as foreign-owned.

The third payment made to ExConsult Media, was done on August 25, 2021 under single sourcing at a price of US$65,000. Services provided for Aker Energy was “Communication and Advertising”.

Fourth on the list is the lowest amount so far US$11,532.28. It was made for “Media Services” under single sourcing again on August 21, 2021.

US$65,000, which was the last payment on the list, was advanced on August 26, 2021 under single sourcing.

It had been established that these payments, and others to some journalists and Civil Society Organizations, happened in the heat of the US$1.6 billion transaction between Aker Energy and Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC).

The deal was put before parliament late July of 2021 amidst public uproar on the profitability of the state pumping a US$1.65billion to acquire a 37 percent stake in the Deepwater Tano/Cape Three Points (DWT/CTP) and 70 percent interest in SDWT. It was said that the investment was not worth the money.

Duncan Amoah, the Executive Secretary of Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) and the Executive Director of Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA), Mensah Thompson, have since admitted collecting the cash from Aker and the GNPC team.

While, Duncan Amoah said he received GHC30, 000 from Evans Mensah, Thompson revealed he got some GHC10, 000 from the AKER and GNPC officials; the sellers and buyers who had called him on phone and met him at the Airport Residential Area in Accra and handed him the money.

The Herald has since discovered that many more CSO operators, journalists as well as Parliamentarians, were paid over a US$1.6 billion transaction which eventually collapsed, following a decision by AGM, a sister company of AKER Energy, to pull out. Some had also visited the Trasacco residence of the then Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GNPC, KK Sarpong.

Evans Mensah, had also told The Herald that he has been working for Aker Energy, but mainly on writing and issuing press statements on behalf of the Norwegian company.

He told this newspaer that he decided to stay away from the US$1.6 billion transaction and go for a holiday in Dubai with his family when it became obvious that people had taken an entrenched position on the deal.

What struck him most to stay away, was the mentioning of Dr Emmanuel Steve Asare Manteaw, as supporting the deal because he had also pocketed some cash from the promoters of the transactions.

But it has emerged that Evans’ role goes from writing press statements to using his private company to do business for the Norwegians.

In his Linkedin gave a profile of himself and his company.

“MSc Media and Communications LSE – London School of Economics. Editor MULTIMEDIA GROUP JOY NEWS. Head, Political Desk. CEO, EXCOM

Head of Political Desk at MULTIMEDIA GROUP, JOY NEWSMULTIMEDIA GROUP, JOY NEWS

Jan 2016 – Present · 7 yrs 5 mos Jan 2016 – Present · 7 yrs 5 mos Accra, Ghana Accra, Ghana

“• I Coordinate the cross platform teams for radio, television and online to develop political content and ensure accurate, compelling and comprehensive coverage of all political events

“• Produce research to inform the group’s coverage of political events.

“• Lead the development of strategy and detailed plan for the coverage of national presidential and parliamentary elections.

“Premium communications solutions provider with a client base of multinational firms like GOLD FIELDS.

“Lead a team of dedicated professionals in deploying media and communications tools to assist clients achieve their communications objectives.

“• Under my leadership we have successfully facilitated using audio-visual documentation interactions between top government policy formulators and our civil society clients giving them an opportunity to advance their advocacy objectives.

“• Under my leadership EXCOM have executed several international donor funded advocacy documentaries in the areas of oil and gas and mining.

“• Under my leadership EXCOM played a central role in designing the radio promotional material and helping facilitate the maiden Africa Oil and Gas Summit held in Accra under the auspices of the Africa Centre for Energy Policy and the Ghana Oil and Gas for Inclusive Growth, GOGIG programme.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: The Herald

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