Norwegian News portal VG is reporting that a string of an international cartel of money launderers have been linked to a dubious contract signed by the Akufo Addo administration to receive over 3.5 million doses of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccines for Ghana.
Even though Russia is selling these vaccines to countries at US$10 per dose, Ghana has reportedly signed a contract with an Arab Sheikh and a Norwegian criminal to buy the vaccines at US$ 19 each!
This means this international cartel of money launderers would pocket some US$31.5 million (GHC 182.7 million) of hard-earned cash of Ghanaians taxpayers.
Per Morten Hansen (59), the fugitive Norwegian money launderer told VG that he was the go-between for the questionable contract
“I have arranged for vaccines. I was a go-between and conveyed vaccines to Ghana,” VG quotes him in an explosive report released late last week.
Hansen also claims he is a good friend to former American film star Steven Seagal (69) who has become a Russian citizen (Special Envoy).
But Hansen is a known crook in Norway, having been indicted for aggravated money laundering and massive tax evasion
Attempts to get a copy of the said contract is still murky, but the Norwegian media are stating that Ghana’s contract may have been given to the company of 34-year-old Sheik Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum, the second cousin of the ruler of the United Arab Emirates Sheikh Al Maktoum.
Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktuom is in partnership with Farooq Zahoor who is also wanted in Norway for what the police believe is his role in the spectacular Nordea fraud in 2010, where the conspirators emptied the account of a super-rich widow. Zahoor is also said to be wanted in Switzerland for establishing a fake bank to scam unsuspecting people.
Incidentally, it was the same Al Maktuom and Farooq Zahoor who, in 2015, signed Ghana’s controversial multi-million-dollar Ameri power plant deal.
The then opposition News Patriotic Party (NPP) led by Nana Akufo Addo harshly criticised the then-John Dramani Mahama administration for entering what the NPP described as a shady deal and vowed to scrap it if it won the election.
However, when the NPP won power in 2016, the Akufo Addo administration quickly did not only renewed and extend the Ameri power contract, it inflated the contract sum in what led to serious discontent in the government and resulted in the sacking of Boakye Agyarko, the then Energy Minister whose aides claim was arm-twisted by the Jubilee House to endorse the Ameri deal.
When the Sheik and Zahoor once more arrived in Ghana in March 2021 as part of the delivery of Ghana’s first doses of the Sputnik V vaccine, investigators could not help but confirm the strong link to the Akufo Addo administration.
Details are still not verified, but there are strong suspicions that the government of Ghana had secretly signed the vaccine contract with Aurugulf Health Investment LLC in Dubai, a company suspected to be owned by the Sheikh and Farooq Zahoor.
Checks by Whatsup News at the Ministry of Health and other agencies has hit blanks.
The sheik and umar Farooq Zahoor have for several years travelled around Africa, Asia and South America, met with heads of state and signed agreements – often just memorandums of understanding.
It is believed that the Aurugulf Health Investment had entered into an unholy alliance with the Russian National Investment Fund (RDIF) to supply the vaccine to willing African countries such as Ghana.
The entire arrangement raises more questions than answers because the RDIF had established a company called Human Vaccine LLC to sell the Sputnik V vaccine internationally.
Human Vaccine LLC had sold the same type of vaccine to countries like Slovakia and Hungary at US$ 10 per dose, reinforcing the suspicion that Ghana is dealing with the middleman which is creaming off almost 50% of the actual selling price of the vaccine and at the expense of Ghanaians taxpayers.
When the Norwegian news portal VG caught up with Umar Farooq Zahoor to quiz him about the deal with Ghana and the other countries his company had reportedly sold to, he declined to give any details, saying he is bound by non-disclosures.
“We are subject to non-disclosure agreements with the authorities when we buy and sell, so we have no interest in discussing details regarding what types of agreements, what types of prices and what types of expenses are involved”, he says.
As it turns out, the contract to award the vaccine importation deal was sneaked in on the blindside of the Ghanaian Parliament against the law.
“The agreement to purchase Sputnik vaccines did not go via the Parliament of Ghana, which is a statutory requirement for international agreements, says Member of Parliament Kwabena Mintah Akandoh (40). He is the Minority ranking member on the Health Committee of Parliament,” the Norwegian VG reported.
This means that for the umpteenth time, groups of faceless individuals
have used COVID-19 as an excuse to line their pockets at the expense of the
According to VG the Kwaku Agyemang Manu-headed Ministry of Health has refused to respond to every inquiry about the contract. Attempts by Whatsup News to dig up the said contract have not yielded any result yet.
However, VG reports that officials from the Ministry of Finance had told
them that the entire contract was cooked at the Ministry of Health and the
Finance Ministry had only paid the contract sum recommended from the health
“….As VG is about to leave the country, a phone call is received from
the Ministry of Finance, requesting a visit from VG. A group of bureaucrats
receive VG but note that the entire process has taken place in the Ministry of Health,” VG reported.