For years, dozens of scammers wrapped as ‘Caterers across the country have swindled millions of cedis from Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) and funneling the stolen money through EZswitch accounts provided for them by their disciples.
Between 2017 and 2020, under Cynthia Mamle Morrison, the former Gender Minister’s watch and working with thousands of swindlers, facilitated a series of schemes that resulted in the theft of at least 8 million and more from five regions, according to a report intercepted by this paper.
In targeting their thievery, they used ghost schools also known as non-existing schools, paying wrong Caterers, bloated enrollment and different EZswitch accounts. Under these schemes, some pose as Caterers, tricks their disciples into transferring into bank account they (fraudsters) control or withdraw all the money for them for peanuts.
Northern Women Org stole over ¢ 1.756,440 in 3 terms
In the burgeoning underworld of fraud, New Patriotic Party’s Northern Regional Women Organizer, Hajia Rahana Aziz went by a raft of pseudonyms, including her son, sisters, aides and her incapacitated grannie.
The kleptocratic Women Organizer cum Northern Regional Deputy NADMO Coordinator has been collecting subventions for cooking for nine schools in Northern Region.
In all, forty-seven schools in the Northern Region are enmeshed in one fraud tactics or another out of the over Nine Hundred schools.
Nine schools could not be traced in the records of the Northern Regional Secretariat of Ghana School Feeding Programme. However, Rahana Aziz has managed to get these schools onto the national data through her assigns, agents, and collaborators.
The enrollment of these nine schools summed up to Seven Thousand Six Hundred and Twenty-nine (7,629). Per contracts for cooking under the school feeding programme, Rahana Aziz and her protégés were required to provide food to the over seven thousand students purported to have been allotted to them.
Worryingly, Hajia Rahana and her accomplices do not cook for any of the nine schools but always get paid to the detriment of the students and the Caterers who are sincerely striving on loans to provide food for the children under their care.
Astoundingly, people recruited and paid regularly to monitor the schools to ascertain whether or not the people contracted to provide meal for students under GSFP are truly working as expected of them. Fortunately for Rahana and her ilk, but unfortunately for parents, students and GSFP the monitors are not working to expectation.
Our investigations revealed that Rahana Aziz receives over ¢534,030 every term ending posing as Caterers who have cooked for the students.
The table below shows name of fake caterers, the schools, enrollment and EZswitch numbers.
|S/N||Name of Caterer||School||Enrollment||EZswitch|
|1.||Alhassan Zeilia||Kukuo AME Zion Prim||745||83960009-5|
|2.||Abdul-Aziz Iklima||Wataniya E/R Prim||720||50609341-1|
|3.||Mohammed Humu||Nyankpala Islamic Prim.||520||83923840-7|
|4.||Abdulai Ihti-man||St. Monicas R/C Prim||825||285267443-1|
|5.||Adam Adishetu||St. Joseph Prim.||1042||285267451-0|
|6.||Sulemana Asana||St. Paul Prim||1021||67706062-4|
|7.||Sulemana Rahana||Nyankpala D/A Prim||1300||50609323-9|
|8.||Zakaria Memunatu||Nizamia E/A Prim||463||117641027-2|
|9.||Mohammed Awal Adiatulai||Police Barracks Prim||993||486708622|
Rahana has assumed a position above reproach through her sister, Fatayia Abdul-Aziz, a janitor at the Jubilee House.
Groups of School Feeding Caterers raised the alarm some months ago about how some kleptocracy workers of the Akufo-Addo government were diverting school feeding funds, in defiance of terms of their contract.
Exacerbated by undue delay of payment, Caterers were forced to put themselves together under the umbrella name (National School Feeding Caterers Association) led by one Hajia Fati Amadu, formerly at NPP headquarters, and a certain Hajia Asana.
But aggrieved by the extortionist gambit by the leadership of the group, some of the Caterers broke away to form a new WhatsApp platform dubbed (G. N.S.F.C.A).
We discovered that the stealing is pervasive because the transmission of data from District to Region, to National.
It was apparent that some schools captured at the District levels are conspicuously missing either at the Regional Office or National Secretariat.
Yilo Krobo MCE caught up in school feeding scam
Similarly, the Municipal Chief Executive of Yilo Krobo in the Eastern Region has fraudulently collected Sixty-five thousand cedis (¢65,000) last year in subsidy payments for school feeding that was never delivered.
Once hailed for empowering some sixty-six (66) persons living with disabilities in his Municipality, the President’s representative has now found himself in turbulent waters.
Rather than working tirelessly to ensure more schools in his area are hooked onto the school feeding programme for more school going children to benefit, Hon. Kupualor Ebenezer Tetteh, Municipal Chief Executive Officer, MCE, of Yilo Krobo has instead refused to provide food for the Three Hundred and Twenty (320) pupils of Pleyo M/A Basic School.
The pupils of Pleyo M/A Basic School are yet to enjoy food that was reported to have been served them for the past three academic terms. The Honourable MCE has done the dishourable, and unthinkable thing by reneging on his responsibility as a Caterer to cook or provide food for periods.
Unknown to the community, the man selected out of many to represent the President, have been dubiously paid a total of ¢ 21,728.00 as cost for cooking three terms for Pleyo M/A Basic School.
The ¢65,000 was paid and same collected through EZswitch account number 101477370-8 registered to Kupualor Ebenezer Tetteh to the detriment of the community.
The probe commissioned by The Hawk Newspaper is the latest in a string of investigations into School Feeding subsidy that is rife with corruption and a massive drain on state finances.
We have embarked on this mission because corruption is endemic within Ghanaian government agencies meant to help citizens. Relative to their high cost, these agencies’ programs appear to help very few actual small business people. Instead, they are set up to fail—eroding trust in government and functioning as conduits for embezzlement, contract fraud, deliberate waste, and the distribution of political patronage.
Exacerbated by mismanagement and broader policy failures, this form of corruption has disproportionately high multiplier effects. It stymies economic diversification and inflicts lasting damage and opportunity costs on a sector.