Managing Editor of the New Crusading Guide Abdul Malik Kwaku Baako Junior believes that there is more to unearth in the alleged visa fraud involving some members’ parliament (MPs).
“What has been reported or made public is a tip of an iceberg”, he revealed on Joy Fm’s news analysis programme Newsfile on Saturday.
He accused the lawmakers of abusing their privileges in visa application through the commission indicating that there were instances of misrepresentation involving the persons they guaranteed to be given visas.
“I am clear in my mind there was abuse of privileges…..I am clear in my mind there were also instances of misrepresentation. Someone says this is my wife and it turns out to be his cousin”, he disclosed.
He called on Members of Parliament (MP) who have descended on the UK High Commissioner Jon Benjamin to halt the attacks questioning if indeed they committed some of the crimes he claimed or not.
“Stop the attacks on the British High Commissioner. Did we do or not do some of things he claimed we did. We need to investigate the issue thoroughly because I believe 95% of the contents of his letter making the allegations are true”, he intimated.
According to him, the latest visa racketeering scandal further sinks the image of parliament backing calls for thorough investigations by parliament’s privileges committee to unearth the truth in the matter.
“It brings the image of parliament into disrepute and persons involved are liable for some examination and possible sanctions. The matter must be referred to the privileges committee of parliament. The speaker promised to take action and that is commendable”, he noted.
British authorities have cited four Ghanaian lawmakers for alleged visa fraud as they were reported to have used their diplomatic passports through middlemen to apply for visas for some persons who traveled but overstayed during their visits to the UK
Richard Acheampong, MP for Bia East in the Western Region, Joseph Benhazin Dahah, MP for Ntotroso in the Bono Ahafo region, Johnson Kwaku Adu, MP for Ahafo Ano South West, in the Ashanti Region and George Boakye, former MP for Asunafo South in the Bono Ahafo region are said to those who perpetrated the act.
The British High Commission in a correspondence to the Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Aaron Mike Ocquaye that has been leaked according to a leaked letter, said “The British High Commission considers the actions [of the MPs] completely unacceptable. In some cases these behaviours may arguably be criminal in nature,” the letter said.
It added that given what has transpired, the High Commission will “will henceforth only entertain and prioritise requests for visas from MPs, if they are made through the parliamentary protocol office who should verify that there is an official, parliamentary reason for the proposed visit.”
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