An Accra High Court, presided over by Justice Olivia Obeng Owusu, has struck out the case filed by the reshuffled Minister for Tourism, Catherine Afeku, against three Americans and a Ghanaian seeking an order for the recovery of all sums paid to them (defendants) in satisfaction of a judgment debt.
On November 30, 2007, another Accra High Court, presided over by Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu, ordered Catherine Afeku to pay $217,462 plus interest to the Americans (now defendants) for a business transaction that went bad. The former Tourism Minister, after making part payment of the judgement debt, went to court on November 22, 2013, praying the judge for general damages for fraud against the Americans.
She also prayed the court to order interest payment on the judgement debt she (Afeku) had paid to the Americans and their Ghanaian counterpart, who they had given the power of attorney to prosecute the case for them in Ghana.
Catherine Afeku again prayed the court for the release of her house, H/N.LVC/73, Lower Axim, from attachment, in addition to the recovery of a Mitsubishi Diamante saloon car with registration number AS7323W.
An order to restrain the further enforcement of the judgment in Suit No. 245/06, until the final determination of the instant action, plus punitive cost.
The former tourism minister made these demands in court, because, according to her, she has discovered fresh irrefutable evidence in the nature of a video recording of the 3rd defendant (who was among the plaintiffs in the first case she lost), confessing that the whole scheme to file Suit No. 245/06, together with the evidence led against the plaintiffs herein by all the defendants herein, was a concoction.
“The 3rd defendant was a witness for the plaintiffs in Suit No. 245/06. He testified as PW 1, and his testimony was heavily relied upon by the trial judge in her judgement of 30th November, 2007.
“The 3rd defendant, in the said video recording, could be seen and heard clearly saying that he allowed himself to be misled by the 1st and 2nd defendants in fabricating information about the plaintiffs herein.
“3rd defendant made a lot of statements suggesting that he knew that the relation between the plaintiffs herein 1st and 2nd defendants was not that of “business investment partners” in the strictest and ordinary sense of the expression, but impressed upon by the other defendants herein to lead evidence to that effect, evidence which formed the basis of the judgement in Suit No. 245/06.”
Upon the receipt of the writ, the Americans – Patricia Gick, Bill Gick, David Thomas – through Francis Kaku Nokoe, who they had given the power of attorney, entered appearance.
Unfortunately, after filing the writ against the Americans, Catherine Afeku failed to pursue the case. The defendants, therefore, prayed the court to strike out the case for want of prosecution, to which the court agreed.
Justice Olivia Obeng Owusu, in her ruling, wrote that the plaintiffs and their counsel were again not in court.
“From the records, it is apparent that they are not desirous of prosecuting their case. Accordingly, I strike out the case for want of prosecution. I award costs of GH¢3,000 against [the] plaintiffs.”
Keeping reading The Chronicle for the full details on why the $217,462 judgement was slapped on Madam Catherine Afeku who was recently removed from the Ministry of Tourism as sector minister by the president.