Almost thirteen years after being found guilty by an Accra Fast Track High Court on two counts of stealing and fraudulently causing financial loss to the state, the former Minister of Youth and Sports, Mallam Yusif Issah, is now daring ex-president Kufuor to accompany him to the powerful Ashanti river deity, Antoa Nyamaa, to spiritually find out if he was a thief.
On July 20th 2001, Mallam Issah was found guilty of stealing $46,000 meant for the payment of bonuses of players of the senior national team, the Black Stars, during a World Cup qualifying match in Sudan on February 25 and also causing financial loss to the state.
He was accordingly jailed for four years on both counts to run concurrently and ordered to refund the $46,000 within two months or serve a two year jail term.
But years down the line, the former Sports Minister claims he was wrongfully accused and imprisoned for committing no offence and that he was ready to prove his innocence if former President Kufuor, whose government charged, trialed and jailed him, was prepared to accompany him to the river deity to have a spiritual trial of the case.
Mallam Issah, who was speaking in an interview with "Time" FM, an Obuasi based radio station recently, claimed corruption gained notoriety during Mr. Kufuor’s two-term tenure in office.
Former President Rawlings last week, during the opening ceremony of the 2013 Volta Regional Youth Camp at the Adidome Senior High School in the Volta Region, stressed on the need for Ghanaians to help President John Mahama fight corruption, a canker he said had grown and gained notoriety during the rule of President Kufuor.
But the opposition NPP, in a statement, noted that Mr. Rawlings had no moral right to criticize Kufuor, given the wrongs he perpetrated on Ghanaians, including persons who went unaccounted for, while he ruled the nation.
The former sports Minister, who was contributing to a discussion on the subject alleged that there was wide spread corruption in the Kufuor regime, but he (Mallam) was used as a sacrificial lamb to let people know that he (Kufuor) abhorred corruption. “But I can tell you that his tenure as President witnessed unprecedented acts of corrupt practices”.
“I am challenging those who are citing my case as vivid example of Kufuor’s urge to fight corruption to tell the whole country a single NPP minister who was processed for court, despite the many corruption charges leveled against them,” he said
Source: The Chronicle
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