The Attorney General’s Department has come under scrutiny for paying an amount of GH˘27 million as judgement debt to one Nana Owusu Akyaw Prempeh II, Worakesehene without proper notification to the Land Valuation Board (LVB).
The payment was made after a Kumasi High Court on August 26, 2008 ruled in favour of Nana Prempeh who had sued the LVB and the State Housing Company (SHC) Limited for not returning a stool land given to the state for the construction of a hospital in 1943, after the project was relocated to a different site.
The land was later handed over to the SHC and part to the Ghana Police Service for the construction of a barracks for its personnel.
The court then ruled that Nana Prempeh be paid GH˘49 million, which was later reviewed and reduced to GH˘27 million by the Attorney General.
Kwesi Bentsi-Enchill the Chief Valuer from the LVB who appeared before the Commission of Enquiry investigating the payment of Judgement Debts yesterday stated that though they (LVB) had officially written to the then Minister of Lands & Forestry not to pay any compensation for the land because it was given for free to the government, the AG paid the stated amount without notifying the Board.
Led in evidence by Dometi Kofi Sorkpor counsel for the commission, the Chief Valuer told the commission presided over by Justice Yaw Apau that “the LVB after receiving a copy of a petition to the presidency, went through the administrative procedures to establish the eligibility of the claim for compensation on that land.
“We investigated on the acquisition process to determine the terms and interest, and in 2007 subsequently communicated to the Minister that the land was given free of cost to government and therefore the board did not find it necessary to put up a valuation on the presumed compensation claim.”
He indicated that the legal suit was instituted based on the board’s letter to the Ministry not to pay the compensation.
Mr. Bentsi-Enchill provided the Commission with further corresponding on the issue.
Kwame Poku Boah, Counsel for the LVB also told the commission that when they got to know of the suit, they filed the necessary processes showing every intention that they wanted to pursue the matter.
He noted that “due to my tight schedule in Accra I handed over the brief and everything to the Kumasi office of the Attorney General’s Department. I did not hear about the matter again until I heard that monies were paid to the plaintiff as compensation.”
Dr. Mark Nii Akwei Ankrah, managing director of SHC, who also appeared before the commission on the same matter, stated that since he assumed office about three years ago he has only sighted a few files on the case, but nothing to do with the payment of the said amount.
“Unfortunately, the file I have does not provide any information on the payment made to Nana Prempeh, so I will not be able to confirm whether we (SHC) are aware of the actual payment,” the MD emphasized.
The ‘Commission of Enquiry into the payment of Judgement Debt and Akin’ under C.I. 79 was appointed by President John Dramani Mahama to investigate the payment of huge monies to individuals and companies, following a public uproar over payment of judgement debts.
Sitting continues on Tuesday May 28, 2013.
Source: Daily Guide
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|