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General News of Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Source: thefinderonline.com

EOCO’s silence on NAM1 saga worrying


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The confirmation by the Ghana Police Service that embattled Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Menzgold Limited, Nana Appiah Mensah, has been arrested in Dubai raises critical questions about how Ghanaian authorities, especially the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO), have handled the matter so far.

A statement issued by the Public Affairs Directorate and signed by its Director-General, Assistant Commissioner of Police David Eklu, said officials from Ghana’s mission in Dubai had visited the suspect, who was in the custody of Dubai Police.

Ghana mission informed on January 13

It stated that on Sunday, January 13, officials of Ghana’s mission in Dubai were informed by Emirati officials that they had already arrested Nana Appiah Mensah as of December 7, 2018 to facilitate the investigation on suspicion that he had been involved in gold trading deals which had gone bad within the jurisdiction.

Security delegation to Dubai in the offing

Information gathered indicates that Ghana is likely to dispatch security officials to Dubai to engage the Dubai authorities on the next steps.

EOCO started investigating NAM1 in June 2018

Information available indicates that EOCO started investigating Nana Appiah Mensah in June 2018 following a complaint it received from Bank of Ghana (BoG).

EOCO arrests NAM1 in August 2018 and granted him bail
According to the information, EOCO, in August, invited the suspect for questioning, after which he was granted a self-recognisance bail to report to EOCO once a week.

NAM1 stopped reporting to EOCO in September 2018
Sources say Nana Appiah Mensah stopped reporting to EOCO in September 2018.

EOCO under fire

Questions are being asked about the basis upon which EOCO granted a self-recognizance bail considering the magnitude of the case.

Many Ghanaians are yearning to know if EOCO confiscated the passport of the suspect and had put him on red alert with the country’s border control agency.

Silence of EOCO fuelling more anxiety

The silence of EOCO on the whole saga is fuelling more anxiety among the public, who are asking questions about how the suspect left the country.

Ghana Immigration Service mute

Information indicates that the Ghana Immigration Service has no information on how Nana Appiah Mensah left the country, but the service is yet to officially comment on this matter.

Arrest warrant on January 9

The police administration on Wednesday, January 9, confirmed a report that an arrest warrant had been issued for the arrest of the suspect and two other directors of the company on charges of defrauding by false pretences and alleged money laundering.

INTERPOL alert

That same day, an INTERPOL alert was triggered to facilitate the search for him globally.

Over 20 individuals report NAM1 to police

The Police Service sought the arrest warrant after over 20 individuals filed a complaint against the suspect.

This was after his company, Menzgold, failed to pay thousands of clients the returns on their investments.

Why NAM1 was arrested in Dubai

Information indicates that Horizon Royal Diamonds DMCC, a Dubai-based company, was duped by some Ghanaians in a gold business.

While chasing the fraudsters for their money, Menzgold Ghana Company Limited was recommended to the Dubai Company to do business with.

Horizon Royal Diamonds and Menzgold duly established contact.

However, before the deal could be struck, some persons privy to the discussions presented themselves as officials of a gold trading company called Just Gold Company Limited to Horizon Royal Diamonds, with the promise of a better deal, to which officials of the Dubai-based company fell for.

It turned out that Horizon Royal Diamonds alleged later that it parted with some $51 million, for which no gold whatsoever was supplied.

Officials of Horizon Royal Diamonds later reverted to Menzgold’s Nana Appiah Mensah in 2018 to supply them gold, upon which request he is said to have demanded an undertaking not to be linked to the transaction with Just Gold Company Limited, the company Horizon Royal alleges it paid the $51 million.

That undertaking duly arrived, spelling out Menzgold’s disconnection with the deal said to have gone bad and its lack of liability.

Following that undertaking, Menzgold proceeded to supply 750kg of gold to Horizon Royal Diamonds, at an agreed price of $28 million at the time of supply.

“Per the arrangement between the two companies, it is now worth $39 million, and Nana had gone there to facilitate the retrieval of the money when the SWIFT transfer account details the guys in Dubai provided turned out to be fake.

“He wanted his money to come and sort out the current situation with his company, but the guys rather reported him to the Dubai authorities, accusing him of fraud.
“That is why he was arrested, but God willing, he will be out by Wednesday to return to Ghana,” a source close to Nana Appiah Mensah told Graphic Online.

The source said Menzgold had duly reported the fake SWIFT detail to EOCO, insisting that “his arrest has nothing to do with Ghana police or Interpol; he only wanted his money to come and sort out Menzgold customers.”

“He will come home soon; hopefully by Wednesday he will be freed. The bail bond posted by the Dubai authorities has been met. Ghanaian officials in Dubai even visited him on Sunday, and if they are minded to, they could be telling the public the true story of why NAM1 was arrested.”

Nana Appiah Mensah had landed in Dubai late last year in the hope of retrieving some $39 million owed Menzgold by Horizon Royal Diamonds DMCC for the supply of gold.

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