The African Development Bank says it did not sanction ex-president John Mahama’s visit to Namibia in July, a Norwegian newspaper VG says.
AfDB Director of External Relations, Victor Oladokun reportedly said the Bank is not involved in any business dealings with the former President.
“We categorically state that the African Development Bank has no knowledge of/nor is it engaged in any transactions involving the parties you have indicated,” VG quoted him as saying.
The Norwegian newspaper has been establishing the relationship between Mahama and controversial Dubai firm, AMERI Group that was awarded the $510m power deal in 2015.
Mahama was reported seen in Namibia in the company of some people identified to be key members of AMERI Group.
VG reported when the former President was questioned about the purpose of his visit in that country, he presented himself as a representative of AfDB.
He reportedly presented a “tempting” alternative power offer to the Namibian government.
“The aim of the visit, he claimed, was to help companies from Dubai to gain a foothold in Namibia’s energy sector,” VG said.
But it was later revealed Mahama was accompanied by Umar Farooq Zahoor, an Oslo man accused of fraud who plays a key role in AMERI Group.
The private secretary of the owner of AMERI Group, Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum was also with them.
The two men were behind the controversial AMERI Power deal signed by Mahama last two years found to be fraudulent by the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP).
After hiding behind the cloak of the AfDB, VG reported the Bank has denied any association with Mahama.
A communication officer of the bank, Chawki Chahed had earlier said the former President had been named a ‘Goodwill Ambassador’ by the bank, but he backed away after Mahama’s dealings were revealed.
“The Bank does not have an official position or ‘Goodwill Ambassador’ title. Rather, we encourage leaders to use their goodwill to speak up for Africa’s accelerated development, whenever they have opportunities to do so,” Mr Oladokun said.
He said the Bank “does not know of and neither does it work with nor have any relationship with the group mentioned in your correspondence.”