Several attempts by Verdens Gang, a foreign-owned Norwegian tabloid newspaper, to get John Mahama to respond to allegations that he travelled to Namibia with two representatives of the controversial Ameri Group to discuss energy opportunities in July appear to have infuriated Joyce Bawah Mogtari, Special Aide to the former President, as she told the journalist her piece of mind.
“Mr Mahama is still unavailable. It doesn’t matter if you call me ten times a day,” Bawah Mogtari said to the journalist who had contacted her on phone.
In a video which captured their conversation, Bawa Mogtari when asked if the former President had seen their request for an interview, replied in the affirmative but said he is not obliged to grant any interview.
“Of course, Mr Mahama sees every request that comes… As I said, Mr Mahama chooses which journalist he speaks to. You can’t force Mr Mahama to speak to you. Can you force the King of Norway to grant you an interview?” she queried.
“I’ve dealt with many journalists, I’ve not dealt with one like you and I’m telling you the truth. You bug me with phone calls, you bug me with text messages and I’ve always tried to be reasonable. Mr Mahama was on leave; he is back and has led a delegation to Monrovia. He is not available at this time. Simple!” she fumed.
In 2015, the John Mahama administration signed a $510-million Build, Own, Operate and Transfer (BOOT) Agreement with AMERI Energy to help solve power crisis the country was enduring at the time.
There were claims the deal had been inflated by about $150 million but officials of the former administration have rejected the allegations.
A report by Verdens Gang revealed that Mr Mahama had entered into a cooperative arrangement with the Sheikh Ahmed Bin Dalmouk al Maktoum of Dubai, now owners of the Ameri Group.
Story: Atta KWAKU BOADI
Writer’s email: Kwaku.email@example.com