JoyNews investigations have uncovered exclusive details on the leadership of two companies registered in Ghana and the United Kingdom (UK) involved in the Airbus scandal that saw bribes paid to obtain a contract.
Ghana is one of five countries in which the European aviation giant, Airbus, paid or attempted to pay millions of dollars in bribes in exchange for contracts, leading a court in Britain to slap a fine of £3 billion on the company.
In court documents and hearings, Airbus admitted five counts of failing to prevent bribery, using a network of secret agents to pay large-scale backhanders to officials in foreign countries, including Ghana, to land high-value contracts.
The scheme was run by a unit at Airbus’ French headquarters, which its one-time chief executive, Tom Enders, reportedly called “bullshit castle”.
According to the report, there are six key actors involved in the scandal regarding Ghana.
Investigators from the UK’s SFO identified them only as Government Official 1 (high ranking and elected), Intermediary 5 (British national and close relative of Government Official 1), Company D (corporate vehicle for Intermediary 5 – shareholder), Intermediary 6 (British national and associate of Intermediary 5), Intermediary 7 (British national and associate of Intermediary 5), as well as Intermediary 8 (Spanish company and front for Intermediary 5).
So, JoyNews set out to find out which companies fit this description.
On December 7, 2009, 53 companies were incorporated in Ghana, among them were Masal Limited, Gold Aircraft Maintenance Company Limited and Gold Aviation Academy.
Some of these names are similar to companies registered in the UK. For example, Masal Limited was incorporated on July 14, 2011, with Gold Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Services Limited, also being incorporated on April 10, 1997.
However, only one name on this list was the same as a company incorporated in the UK in February 2010, that is Deedum Limited, which was incorporated on February 10, 2010.
According to the Registrar General’s Department (RGD), Deedum Limited had three directors namely Nana Kwaku Donkor, company secretary; Philip Sean Middlemiss, director and Samuel Adam Mahama, director.
Sources at RGD say the company is not in good standing with its last annual tax returns filing done in 2011. However, companies are often able to carry on their business, albeit illegally, even when they are not in good standing.
JoyNews checks on online sources reveal that on February 10, 2010, Deedum Limited was incorporated with three directors; Leanne Sarah Davis, company secretary; Philip Sean Middlemiss, director and Samuel Adam Foster, director.
These two companies have some things in common.
Apart from sharing a director, its registered address in the UK, 6th Square, Ringley Chase Whitefield, Manchester is the same address Middlemiss gave as his usual residential address when he presented himself to be the director of Deedum Limited Ghana.
Further checks on the directors show that Samuel Adam Foster had the same address as Samuel Adam Mahama, 19 Avenue Road Penge, London.
Also, the address Samuel Adam Mahama gave when he was registering as director of Deedum Limited in Ghana was 19 Avenue Road Penge, London.
So who is Samuel Adam Foster? Companydirectorcheck.com lists his occupation as director, facilities manager and event officer among others.
Who is Philip Sean Middlemiss? A simple google check revealed that he is a television and radio major, who played in the series Coronation Street.