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The Office of the Vice President is backing an inquiry into an unauthorized letter that was used to clear 15 containers of rice.

On Tuesday, the Office of the Vice President expressed approval of the Special Prosecutor’s decision to continue looking into the clearance of 15 containers of rice, which James Keck Osei allegedly facilitated. Osei, the Director of Administration at the Office of the Vice President, is being investigated for sending an unauthorized letter to the Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in April 2022, requesting assistance in clearing the containers.

The letter contained false information, stating that the Office of the Vice President required the rice for the Ramadan festivities. The GRA did not comply with the request, informing Osei that there was another claimant to the rice. Osei later wrote a letter on July 5, 2022, to withdraw the previous letter and cancel any prior action taken.

In response to the matter, a statement was issued by the Secretary to the Vice President, Augustine Blay, affirming that only the Secretary to the Vice President is authorized to write letters on behalf of the Office. The Chief Director at the Office of the President has also begun an investigation in accordance with Civil Service procedures, with appropriate sanctions to be applied if any breaches are established.

The Office of the Vice President became aware in September of last year that Osei had been invited by the Office of the Special Prosecutor to assist in an investigation related to rice importation. Following this, Osei was arraigned on Monday, February 13, 2023.

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