The Tamale Technical University has paid GH¢172,696 as interest on the price of a Land Cruiser vehicle purchased at a cost of GH¢196,000.
Therefore, the school paid GH¢369,000 for the Land Cruiser vehicle, which is almost double the price.
This came to light at a Public Accounts Committee sitting (PAC), held in Tamale yesterday.
The explanation was that the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) failed to release money to pay for the vehicle for two years, resulting in the huge interest that accrued.
However, the PAC discovered that the contract was silent on interest to be paid in the case of default.
But, following delay in payment, the school negotiated 3.6% monthly compound interest with the supplier.
Chairman of PAC, Dr James Klutse Avedzi faulted the school for negotiating a 3.6% monthly compound interest.
According to him, the best thing to do was to apply the Bank of Ghana’s (BoG) interest rate under simple interest.
He noted that this would have reduced the quantum of interest that has accrued and was paid.
School authorities apologised for the infraction, and Avedzi said the committee would look into it, and if need be recommend that the people involved be surcharged to pay the difference when simple interest is applied.
In another development, the management of Wa Polytechnic has been given a two-week ultimatum to retrieve an amount of GH¢18,000 paid wrongly to staff who were not recognised as members of the polytechnic’s staff.
It emerged that some five persons who were not staff of the school were illegally paid salaries until an audit was done.
Addressing the media after the meeting, rector of the polytechnic, Professor Emmanuel Maato Owusu and the acting accounts officer, Joseph Benoah, admitted the findings and said efforts were being made to get the money back.
According to the rector, the polytechnic was pursuing the case with the help of the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) to retrieve all monies paid illegally to wrong people.
Second-cycle institutions and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) are also scheduled to face the committee during the week.
Chairman of the committee, Dr James Klutse Avedzi lamented that the powers of the committee were limited.