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Red Cross Assure Members Not To Panic On The Illegal Payments Issues

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The Leadership of Ghana Red Cross Society, has assured members and volunteers across the country not to panic over the recent issue about illegal payments recently raised in Parliament.
According to them, the issue is not a new one emerging but, an old issue that the current administration is seriously addressing .

It would be recalled that, the Chairman of Public Accounts Committee “PAC”, Hon. James Kutse Avedzi on the floor of Parliament, referred the Ghana Red Cross Society to the Office of the Attorney-General (A-G) for prosecution for failing to recover illegal payments amounting to about GH¢1.5 million to some members of staff and suppliers.

Parliament recently on the 11″ of December 2023 calls for investigations into some specific matters concerning the Red Cross.

Speaking to the media, the Secretary General of Ghana Red Cross Society, Mr. Gayoni Gbolo Solomon stated, “We are still committed to that promise. Once it is with the Attorney General, we cannot comment deeply on it but I can assure you, a lot of work has been done by my team and the preliminary findings indicate that the report as you heard in the past is not entirely accurate”.

According to Mr. Gayoni Gbolo, the matter raised on the floor is already under investigation, and Parliament is involved, and has already referred it to the Attorney General’s Department for further action. “I commend the Hon. member who raised the issue for his passionate interest in the Red Cross and its wellbeing, and I reaffirm the commitment of the Red Cross to the wise counsel of the Public Accounts Committee which has further enhanced our success story”.

He emphasized that, the current leadership over the past two years, have worked so hard to redeem and rebuild the dented image of the Red Cross caused by the same report and are still building bridges, rekindling partnerships, and forming new ones.

” As a responsible organization, management took the matter up, and went through all the due processes. Relevant internal committees and state institutions including the police were allowed to assist in dealing with the matters. The Ghana Red Cross Society availed itself to assist in the process and appeared before the Public Account Committee, the police, and the Labour Commission”.

The Secretary General averred that, to maintain and further deepen their commitment towards fighting corruption, they have in 2022 subscribed to the IFRC Integrity Line reporting system which is available for anyone to report any possible misconduct involving the Red Cross. “The line is open for volunteers, staff and the public to report issues of fraud and corruption, sexual exploitation and abuse, harassment, child safeguarding, security incidents, health and safety, information security breaches and the Red Cross emblem misuse”.

He revealed further that, the current leadership have established special sub-committees to deal swiftly with complaints, issues of corruption and disciplinary actions saying, most internal control systems have been tightened to make misconduct and corruption less attractive.

“We hereby assure Parliament and the public that we are ready to submit to any form of inquiry that concerns our integrity. Our integrity and public image are dear to us because the Red Cross relies on its image and goodwill to touch the hearts of local partners and the international community to lend a hand of support in times of natural and manmade disasters, conflicts, population movements, epidemics, pandemics etc”.

The Ghana Red Cross he mentioned, does not take its relationship with parliament for granted, and want their relationship to continue growing and to be a model for all African countries to admire and follow.

“We can only assure Parliament and Ghanaians that, the current Red Cross administration has taken concrete steps to ensure that we continue to deliver on our humanitarian mandate as expected of a Red Cross National Society. We are still in cooperation with government, donors, other humanitarian organizations, and the private sector to assist vulnerable people in Ghana”.

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