Immediate former Communications Director of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akomea, is questioning the legality of the decision by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) to investigate the bank accounts of Victoria Hamah, former Deputy Minister of Communications for suspected money laundering activities.
Nana Akomea claims going by the constitutionally, any organization who deems it of importance to investigate a government appointee’s bank account(s) must first seek an order from a court of competent jurisdiction before proceeding.
According to the former Member of Parliament (MP) for Okaikoi South Constituency, parliament has indicated that the court is the sole institution that can give the “go ahead” for a probe into someone’s bank account.
He therefore expressed bewilderment that the state has launched an investigation into the entire former deputy Communication Minister, Ms. Victoria Hammah’s bank accounts, to find out if she indulged in any financial impropriety while in office after she was heard on a leaked tape saying she will not leave politics until she earn US$1Million.
“Normally when parliament is drafting a law for an organization to interfere in the privacy of a citizen, parliament normally insists that that organization must be instructed by the court before it does so,” he said.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the FIC-Ghana, Samuel Thompson Essel, apparently acting on portions of the leaked tape which captures Ms. Hamah saying she would not pick up fights with her superiors and risk her appointment as deputy Communications Minister if she could not boast of a million dollars, sent a letter to all banks nationwide titled “Request for information on Victoria Hammah”, demanded details of her financial transactions since the former deputy minister “has come under security notice”.
It said “Pursuant to section 28 of the anti-money laundering act 2008, Act 749, please furnish us with the following on her; Mandate and account dating forms, Evident on know your customer and customer due diligence, Legible copy of photo identity. All transaction statement (bank and investment statements)”
The said letter wants replies from “all banks” by close of business Friday, November 15, 2013.
Discussing the “Vickyleaks” brouhaha on Adom FM, Nana Akomea questioned the basis of investigating Vicky Hammah’s account wondering if the beleaguered former deputy minister had embezzled state funds.
“I am very much surprise why the Financial Intelligence Centre is allowed to investigate someone’s account without seeking orders from court. I am again amazed as to why government is investigating Victoria Hammah’s account, has she stolen from government coffers? If not, why the probe into her bank accounts?” he quizzed.
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