Former chief Executive Officer of the Ghana National Petroleum Commission (GNPC) Tsatsu Tsikata has sued the Member of Parliament for Adansi Asokwa KT Hammond for claiming that he (Tsikata) has received ex-gratia payement from the state agency.
In a statement Sunday, the astute legal practitioner said he has neither received his outstanding salaries or provident contributions from the company since he left in 2001.
“I have had a writ issued in the High court against the member of parliament of Adansi Asokwa KT Hammond for defamatory statement against me that has been given extensive publicity.
“After over 12 years of service to the Ghana National petroleum Commission as chief executive, even salary payments during the period when I was on leave in 2001 were not made to me. My entitlements to the provident fund were never paid- not even my own contributions. No end of service benefit of any sort were ever paid. A letter I wrote to the chairman of the board of directors was not answered.
“In a radio interview recently, Hon. KT Hammond who was deputy Energy minister in that period, falsely claimed that I must have been paid some entitlements.
“He will now have the opportunity in court to justify this and other false and defamatory statements he been making against me,” the statement noted.
Meanwhile, one of the supposed beneficiaries of the payments Esther Cobbah, who is also wife of Mr. Tsikata, has denied receiving any money from the GNPC as is being claimed by the Adansi Asokwa MP, who first blew the whistle on the alleged payments.
The GNPC confirmed in a statement that it indeed paid Tsikata and three others ex-gratia, but failed to mention figures.
“The Board of Directors of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), has approved the payment of ex-gratia to four former employees of the Corporation, comprising of two former Chief Executives and two Managers.
“The four and the positions at which they exited GNPC are: Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata (Chief Executive); Nana Boakye Asafu-Adjaye (Ag. Chief Executive); Mr. Benjamin Dagadu (Field Evaluation and Development Manager); and Ms. Esther Cobbah (Public Affairs Manager).
“The four served the Corporation for periods ranging between 12 and 21 years. They were all removed from office in 2001, under circumstances that did not allow for the payment of their respective accumulated separation entitlements,” the GNPC statement read.
A board member of the company Abraham Amaliba has, however, said that just one person among the four, has so far received his payment.