The Attorney-General (A-G) has given an indication to pursue all persons that have benefitted financially from the controversial GH¢51.2 million judgement debt paid to businessman Alfred Agbesi Woyome.
Godfred Yeboah Dame, a Deputy A-G is sure the State would leave no stone unturned in tracing all persons who have enjoyed what he describes as “proceeds from ill-gotten wealth”.
He said “…if we find out that persons have profited from it and all apart from Mr. Woyome and his companies, yes it can be traced….”
Mr. Dame who made the disclosure in an interaction on Good Evening Ghana last week, indicated that attempts to retrieve the money from such ‘wrongful beneficiaries’ depends on the circumstances of payment.
Stressing that it depends on the purpose the money was paid to such persons he said “I would say in all reasonableness that if you did some consultancy work for him genuinely and you got paid out of it, I do not see how it can be….”
It may be recalled that last year the then Director of Communications of the NPP, Nana Akomea at a press conference in Accra had released a supposed list of beneficiaries of the money paid the businesses man.
He had alleged that Mr. Woyome financed many projects of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and paid some sums to some individuals within the party.
Nana Akomea had claimed that the party’s General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah and Deputy General Secretary, Koku Anyidoho were beneficiaries of the controversial cash.
The allegation that the two gentlemen, Asiedu Nketia and Koku Anyidoho indeed benefited from the Woyome cash was however not backed with any form of evidence whatsoever.
Nana Akomea said, “GH¢60,000 payment was made to Mr Jewel Ackah on 16th of June 2011.
GH¢20,000 payment to General Mosquito on 2nd September 2011 and GH¢8,000 payment to one Suhuni of Radio Gold.”
He also mentioned the editor of the Insight Newspaper, Mr Kwesi Pratt Jnr as also receiving GH¢2,000 from the money.
According to Mr Akomea, Woyome, from the amount, funded the refurbishment of the NDC office and procurement of motorbikes for a constituency branch of the NDC in the Volta Region.
Other key beneficiaries according to the NPP are; (a)A GH¢1 million payment to the NDC party on 15 February 2011
(b)GH¢75,000 to Professor Awunor on 28 June 2011
(c) GH¢60,000 to Jewel Ackah on 16 June 2011
(d)GH¢20,000 was given to NDC General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia popularly known as General Mosquito on 2 September 2011.
(e) GH¢60,000 was given to former head of Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), Steve Kpordzih in 2011
(f)GH¢8,000 was given to one Suhyini of Radio Gold in 2011
(g)GH¢2,000 was given to Managing Editor of Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt in 2011
(h)GH¢15,000 was given to the NDC branch in Hohoe in 2011
(I) GH¢42,000 was given to the NDC for the purchase of 30 motorbikes
(j)GH¢100,000 was allegedly given to NDC Koku Anyidoho who is now a Deputy General Secretary,
(k) GH¢30,000 was given to the NDC for the renovation of its party office on 29 March 2011
(l)GH¢13,000 was again given to NDC Deputy General Secretary, Koku Anyidoho on 1 May 2011
(m) GH¢30,000 was given to NDC Greater Accra Regional Chairman, Ade Coker on 8 February 2011
THE PUBLISHER has however not seen any from of evidence to prove the allegations put out by Nana Akomea. It remains a pure unproven allegation that became a subject of news.
The embattled businessman, had also earlier dared his accusers to publish the list of persons who have allegedly benefited from the money.
Addressing a press conference in Accra, Mr Woyome questioned a supposed list making rounds on social media as being those persons who benefited from the money, saying, “I will continue to fight till the last drop of my blood.”
But Mr. Dame insists Mr. Woyome’s case is a test for accountability in the country.
“I see this whole case in a different light. I see it as a test for accountability in the country. On trial in this matter is how institutions of state can be used to bring to book a person who illicitly obtains money from the state and decides to use all kinds of tactics to avoid payment. So it has at the core the principle of accountability.”
The Deputy A-G further argued “You find a situation where a person who under the guise of doing business collude with public officers (to take) resources of the state and am saying that it’s not justified for such persons to keep proceeds from such endeavour.”
He was emphatic that “the extent to which we can recover the asset or money from Mr. Woyome will be the test accountability.”
By: Jeffrey De-Graft Johnson