Ghana has ordered a probe into accusations of bribery by European planemaker Airbus to ensure the purchase of three military planes between 2009 and 2015.
Ghana was among over a dozen countries involved in a $4-billion settlement Airbus agreed with European and US regulators concerning alleged bribes to clinch sales of its aircraft.
Airbus hired – and disguised about 5 million euros in payments to a close relative of a government official in Ghana with no aerospace experience in connection with the sale of the planes, Britain’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) said on Friday.
The SFO’s disclosures, made public after a nearly four-year investigation, came as courts on both sides of the Atlantic formally approved settlements that lift a legal cloud that has hung over Europe’s largest aerospace group for years.
But in Ghana the matter looks set to continue.
The West African country will ‘conduct a prompt inquiry to determine the complicity or otherwise of any Ghanaian government official, past or present,’ President Nana Akufo-Addo’s office said in a statement late on Sunday.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC), which was in power at the time, denied the bribery claims in a statement on Sunday.
‘The reports alleging that Airbus SE paid bribes during the administration of President John Atta Mills and John Mahama are false,’ the statement said.