Information available to Daily Guide indicates that members of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) who benefitted from Alfred Woyome’s GH˘51.2million pay-out from the government for no job done are reeling under fear of being named.
Some of these individuals are said to be making frantic efforts including lobbying key and influential members of the party to prevent the Economic and Organised Crimes Office (EOCO) from making the list public.
This comes days after the EOCO report named Gifty Nerquaye-Tetteh, the wife of the Chief State Attorney, Samuel Nerquaye-Tetteh, who handled the Woyome case, as having benefitted from the booty.
EOCO was tasked by President Atta Mills to investigate the strange circumstance that led to the payments of the gargantuan money to Woyome, the man who prides himself on being the financier of the NDC.
President Atta Mills is said to have benefitted from the Woyome largesse, as the NDC financier is said to have generously supported the president’s re-election bid.
The EOCO report uncovered from his bank statements that Woyome had paid a gigantic amount of GH˘400, 000 (˘4billion) into Gifty’s account. Analysts believe this could be part of reasons why Mr Nerquaye-Tetteh put in a case of no defence on behalf of government, thereby leading to the payments of the GH˘58million to Woyome.
The then Attorney General and Minister for Justice, Betty Mould-Iddrisu, and her deputy at the time, Ebo Barton-Odro said the state had no defence.
Betty had been running away from the payments claiming that she only authorised the payment of the initial GH˘17million as ordered by the court.
But available documents indicate that Mrs Mould-Iddrisu, before leaving the AG’s department for the Ministry of Education, where she recently resigned, on December 9, 2010 authorised the Finance Minister, Dr Kwabena Duffuor, to pay the remaining GH˘34million to Woyome based on a pre-trial settlement conference she had with the NDC financier’s lawyers on 7th December, 2010.
The EOCO report said it was the single delinquent action of Mr Nerquaye-Tetteh that led to the seeming legitimisation of Mr Woyome’s claim.
So far, no other names have been put out by EOCO except the names of certain individuals being bandied in sections of the media.
But sources said there are more names, especially people in government on Woyome’s bank statement. This is what has sent shivers down the spines of most of these individuals who equally benefitted from the booty.
Sources however said EOCO was bent on putting out the names of those involved and possibly invite them for questioning. A source told Daily Guide Woyome was worth $90million in cash and investments spread in Ghana and the United States.
While the source pleaded anonymity and declined to name the sort of investment, he said the Woyome camp was optimistic that the NDC financier would soon be granted bail and would put up a spirited defence to the charges of fraud levelled against him.
Meanwhile, National Organiser of the NDC, Yaw Boateng Gyan, has initiated a screaming campaign against allegations that he received a brand new 4×4 Lexus from Woyome. Recent media reports named some NDC kingpins as having received vehicles and cash from the infamous judgment debt.
General Secretary of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, earlier admitted to collecting a vehicle from Woyome but said it was part of services rendered as a legal counsel to him.
NPP Pooh-Pooh EOCO Report
The interim report of the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) on the Woyome financial scandal notwithstanding, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has repeated it position that the investigative body was a smokescreen for a big time cover-up.
In its response to the report, the NPP, in a statement signed by their National Chairman, Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, stated that the interim report confirmed its earlier reservations.
“We stated in our statement of 10th January 2012 that the President’s order to EOCO to intervene in the matter was simply a smokescreen, charade and a calculated attempt to cover up the involvement of the President, some of his ministers and other government officials in the sordid affair,” the party stated.
The party reiterated that EOCO was and is still a wrong forum to deal with the Woyome scandal, pointing out that “even to the casual observer, the EOCO Report cannot be taken seriously and when subjected to critical analysis, it collapses like a pack of cards.”
The report, the NPP said, was made up of half-truths, inherent contradictions, inconsistencies, lies, unfounded innuendos and baseless speculations.
The party stressed that it rejected the contents of the report because of inherent inconsistencies. Whilst the President claimed his ignorance of the affair, “we are suddenly told by EOCO that he intervened and even sought to stop payments to Woyome” the party pointed out.
The NPP posed questions as to when the president knew of the illegal payment and who told him about the illegal payment?
It asked how the president attempted to stop the illegal payment, who he instructed not to honour the payment and what he did when the instructions were ignored.
The party stated that it had reliable information that, from the ill-gotten Woyome bank account from which EOCO identified the payment of the GH˘400,000 to the wife of the Chief State Attorney, “other payments were made to high-ranking government officials and prominent NDC Executives”.
The NPP pointed out that it was not surprised that the report was quiet on these payments, since from the outset it was an orchestrated attempt to cover up organised official corruption of proportions never witnessed before in the country’s history.
“At the appropriate time, we shall present to the people of Ghana a detailed analysis of this apology of a report,” it claimed.
Source: Charles Takyi-Boadu& A.R. Gomda
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