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Airport cocaine smuggling scandal: Ablakwa makes fresh revelations

Local News

21 days ago
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The Member of Parliament for the North Tongu constituency, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has disclosed new details regarding the cocaine smuggling scandal at Kotoka International Airport.

He revealed that a letter he encountered indicates that key suspects who have been interdicted in the scandal will continue to receive two-thirds of their salaries during the ongoing investigations.

Furthermore, the letter suggests that the government is unable to reclaim the salaries of those who may be found guilty of the charges.

Ablakwa voiced his anger over the unseemly acts of the airport staff, which he believes tarnished the nation's reputation internationally and could have future repercussions for the state.

“Intercepted letters of interdiction in the ongoing Ghana Airport Cocaine Smuggling Scandal reveal that the key suspects are to enjoy two-thirds of their salaries while on interdiction. This is absolutely ridiculous and does not serve as sufficient deterrence to other operatives at the Kotoka International Airport who may be tempted to engage in such egregious conduct.

“My outrage is also premised on the fact that whereas the state can refund salaries to interdicted suspects who may be acquitted, it is virtually impossible for the state to retrieve these salaries from those found complicit…,” he wrote on his X page sighted by GhanaWeb.

The MP urged the government to implement rigorous measures to curb drug smuggling, which has become a significant obstacle for the state.

"Ghana must immediately embrace a stringent, unyielding stance in the battle against drug smuggling, a fight we are embarrassingly losing lately with severe international consequences.

"We need to start a new chapter at our airports where every official, from the board and management to staff and other operatives, understands that there is a steep price for such actions — not this system of staying home and receiving two-thirds of a salary without working," he asserted.

It will be recalled that the Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) interdicted all staff involved in the recent cocaine smuggling case at Kotoka International Airport.

The Herald Newspaper reported that the scandal came to light after the arrest of a substantial amount of illegal drugs at Brussels Airport in Belgium, with indications that the cocaine had been smuggled through KIA on a Royal Air Maroc flight, aided by a GACL staff member on March 23, 2024.

Proeger Delgey Bianca, a Dutch national, was caught at Brussels Airport with eight and a half (8.5) kilograms of suspected cocaine, allegedly transported through KIA on the specified date.

A GACL statement dated April 10 confirmed the start of investigations and the interdiction of the implicated staff.
 

source: Ghanaweb.com