Aljazeera, in a four-part investigative documentary series, has uncovered damning evidence of gold smuggling and money laundering syndicates in Zimbabwe, with Ghana implicated.
Undercover journalists posing as Chinese gangsters engaged Alistair Mathias, a self-described “Financial Architect” who has a track record of successfully orchestrating such syndicates.
Mathias revealed that he had executed similar schemes in Ghana and claimed to be good friends with its President, whom he also said used to be his lawyer.
Mathias, who was once the biggest smuggler in Ghana, revealed his modus operandi to the undercover journalists.
He indicated that his operations in Africa rely on the trust that some dubious politicians have in him to keep their siphoned resources safely tucked away.
He explained that the politicians involved do not keep assets in their own names but rely on proxies, with Mathias taking tenders, road construction, procurement, and supplying different things.
He revealed that in doing this, he is able to inflate the cost of contracts and subsequently split the profits with the politicians involved.
“In Ghana, I take tenders, road construction, procurement, supplying different things, oil, this that. There, all the politicians get taken care of, indirectly because it allows me to do all my other stuff freely.”
“For example, Ghana government, I get the contract. I subcontract it to you, a $100 million contract. The Ghana government pays me $100 million. I give it to you, and you say it’s $80 million.”
“In this scenario, the outstanding $20 million out of the inflated $100 million is shared per an arrangement reached between Alistair and the said politician,” he added.
“I’ll have an arrangement with them, and they get 15… I’ll probably get 5 million. I keep all of it in Dubai. Whenever they want it, they just tell me and I send it.”
“Ghana’s President is a good friend of mine, in fact, he was my lawyer,” he said.
Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo has denied any recollection of acting as a lawyer for Mathias or his company, while Mathias himself has denied ever being awarded any tender by the Ghanaian government or entering into any government contracts in any African country.