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General News of Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

EOCO disgracing Akufo-Addo - Kennedy Agyapong


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Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong, has described the decision by the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) to storm the Electoral Commission (EC) in an attempt to drive the Deputy Commissioner out of her office as disgraceful.

According to him, EOCO is nothing but a ‘bogus’ entity that has succumbed itself to be manipulated by some elements at the Presidency.

There was a chaotic scene at the EC Monday, after the EOCO Boss led five heavily armed police officers with two armoured vehicles into the premises to forcibly remove the Deputy Chair, Georgina Opoku Amankwah, from office for resuming full official duties in defiance of a directive that asked her to stay away.

After several hours of uneasy calm at the EC, EOCO asked lawyers for the embattled Deputy Chairperson of the EC to give them two weeks to come up with their findings on their client.

Speaking on Adom TV’s Morning Show, “Badwam” on Tuesday, Mr. Agyapong opined that EOCO is biased towards the EC boss, Charlotte Osei and a deputy commissioner, Amadu Sulley. He argued that it was unfair for Mrs Opoku Amakwah to be forced out when indeed the two other staff at the commission who are also under investigation are still at post.

“The principle by EOCO was wrong. EOCO is a bogus organization. They are very bias. I know there are officers who have been accused but why have they turned their guns on only one person. I don’t know that woman but I think they have not been fair to her,” he lamented.

Kennedy Agyapong maintained that the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) is inciting shame and exposing itself to ridicule.

According to the controversial MP, EOCO was directed by some elements at the Flagstaff House to coerce the interdicted Deputy Commissioner in a move to influence investigations whiles protecting the EC chair, Charlotte Osei.

“NPP members are protecting and taking orders from EC boss; I don’t hate Charlotte Osei but her utterances and behavior is very bad and needs to be condemned. I know some small boys at the flagstaff house are influencing the situation and are only embarrassing the President.

“I receive calls from some judges telling me that some small boys at the flagstaff house are frustrating lawyers on the case and are making issues worse” he stressed.



Background

EOCO in a letter dated, July 4, 2017 addressed to the EC Chairperson, Mrs Charlotte Osei, demanded that Mrs Opoku-Amankwaa and three other senior staff of the EC proceed on leave to pave way for investigations into “the loss of about GH¢480,000 from the Endowment Fund at the Electoral Commission.”

She was accused of misapplication of staff endowment funds at the EC, hence EOCO stepping into the matter.

Mrs Opoku-Amankwaa, however, has denied the accusations.

Officers of the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO), led by its Executive Director, ACP K.K. Amoah (Rtd), together with five armed policemen, Monday stormed the offices of the Electoral Commission (EC) in Accra, to chase out the Deputy Commissioner in-charge of Corporate Services, Georgina Opoku-Amankwah, from her office.



This was after the embattled deputy chairperson, who is on interdiction on the orders of the EC Chairperson, Charlotte Osei, defied the anti-graft investigative body and decided to resume work on the instructions of her lawyers.

Ms Opoku-Amankwaah said she was tired of the embarrassment visited on her by her continued interdiction and decided to resume work, saying that under the law it is only the president who can send her packing.

However, the EOCO officers said they were still investigating the alleged misappropriation of the EC’s Endowment Funds and so it was not appropriate for Ms. Opoku Amankwaah to be at post.

The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has been given 14 days to provide the embattled Deputy Chair of the Electoral Commission (EC), Georgina Opoku Amankwaah, with findings of investigations into allegations of financial impropriety made against her.

The 14-day ultimatum was agreed upon after a dramatic show of force but failed attempt by EOCO to forcibly remove Mrs Opoku Amankwaah from her office on Monday.

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