National Cathedral Secretariat rebuts Gh¢28m payment to Cary Summers

Ghana National Cathedral
Ghana National Cathedral

National Cathedral Secretariat rebuts Gh¢28m payment to Cary Summers

The Executive Director of the National Cathedral of Ghana, Dr. Paul Opoku-Mensah has rebutted -claims about the Secretariat’s involvement in the payment of Gh¢28 million to a US Consultant, Cary Summers.

In a press release dated 7th January 2023, the Secretariat said their attention has been drawn to accusations involving a GHC 28m payment to a US consultant, Cary Summers, to organize a fundraiser in the US for the National Cathedral project.

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The press release reads:

The latest accusation comes in the wake of their January 2, 2023 rebuttal of the accusations that i) monies paid by the government to the project could not be accounted for, and ii) the architect, Sir David Adjaye, was given a contract of 34% of the total project cost. As we documented, the total sum paid by the government to the National Cathedral project is accounted for.”

“Similarly, the PPA-approved contract to Adjaye Associates was not 34% but 12.5%, below the 16.5% allowable by the Ministry of Works and Housing. More critically, the contract was not to Sir David Adjaye as an Architect, but for Architectural, Engineering, and other services involving over 10 international and Ghanaian companies.”

“Similarly, there is no contract for Cary Summers, but rather the Nehemiah group of which Cary Summers, the founding President of the Museum of the Bible in Washington DC, and one of the world’s leading experts on religious theme parks, is the CEO.”

“And this contract is for a set of consultancy services, the most important being the coordination of work on the National Cathedral’s Bible Museum of Africa, and the Biblical Gardens of Africa. As we have indicated, the integration of the Bible Museum-the largest in the world when completed – and the Biblical Gardens are aimed at transforming Ghana into a hub for international pilgrimage and tourism.”

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With respect to the work of the National Cathedral’s Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens, the Secretariat indicated that

“The work of the National Cathedral’s Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens involves some of the leading global firms, who between them have worked on some of the major museums in the world. They include Kubik Maltbie; PRD: Cortina Productions; JMC. The payments to the Nehemiah group, therefore, is not to Cary Summers to organize a fundraiser, but to these world-class firms for their work on the Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens.”

“Incidentally, the National Cathedral Secretariat submitted a copy of the report of the completed Concept Design of the Bible Museum and Biblical Gardens to Parliament on December 15, 2022. And we indicated to Parliament that the full concept design report, and all related documentation, is available upon request to the Secretariat. This still remains the case!”

“Finally, a project of this nature that significantly raises the issues of faith and national development will always have its discontents, malcontents, as well as those who would use lies, and reckless populist statements to give the impression of wanting accountability.”

“The Board and Management of the National Cathedral Project remains focused and committed to the completion of the National Cathedral, and would continue to do so with diligence, integrity, excellence, and accountability.”

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