Chairperson of the Privileges Committee in Parliament, Joseph Osei-Owusu, says the controversy surrounding the sale of 60% of Social Security and National Insurance Trust’s stake in four hotels to MP and Minister of Agriculture Bryan Acheampong’s Rock City Hotel has been blown out of proportion.

According to him, Mr Acheampong who doubles as a hotelier placed a bid when SSNIT announced that it was selling its stake. Therefore, since his bid was accepted, he must have presented the offer.

Speaking on Joy FM’s Top Story on May 21, he explained that if the stake was indeed sold, the main concern should be the value at which it was sold, not the individual behind the purchase.

Bekwai MP stressed that, once the question was answered, there was no need for public outcry.

“What the focus should be he is not asking them to buy it from what I have read, if that is true, SSNIT offered to sell. So, what question left to be answered is that is there is there value for money? If you ask me that is the only issue to be determined. If there is no value for money then you may suggest that somebody may have been engaging in some under hand dealing.

“Who is legislating on behave of Rock City? Who has influence and can influence the other person from the other side, of course that is a legitimate issue to raise and argue on. But beyond that I think that we are stretching doing business in this country way beyond,” he said.

The chairperson argued that, holding a public office should not limit an individual from competing in government sales.

“Are you suggesting that because I am in public office, notwithstanding that I am in this business, if there is an opportunity to sell a state asset that plays within the same business, I can’t offer a legitimate and appropriate fees to acquire it?

“I think that we are stretching this public thing beyond reasonable limits. All that matters is that thing was offered for sale by SSNIT itself. Is there a value for money? If you ask me that is the question that we should be focused on?.

He stressed “Whether it was bought by A or B or C or what worth A or B or C buys should arrive only if we determine that the price is grossly undervalued.”

Also, Bryan Acheampong, cautioned the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa against defaming his company.

According to Mr Acheampong, who’s also the owner of Rock City Hotels Limited, the allegations peddled by Mr Ablakwa suggesting that he’s committing any wrongdoing in Rock City’s proposal to purchase 60% of shares in SSNIT’s four hotels are false and baseless.

Speaking on JoyFM’s Super Morning Show, the Abetifi MP expressed his disappointment in the stance taken by his colleague.

“You are just adding things together and trying to destroy me and trying to destroy Rock City. It is most unfair, it is ‘un-Ghanaian’ and you should stop it,” he told Mr Ablakwa who was also on the Super Morning Show.

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