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Diasporia News of Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Source: Ashong, Edward Nii Boye

Prosecute president and ministers involved in VVIP cocaine saga

Ghanaians Abroad Against Corruption

12th August, 2015

cc- Secretary General’s office ,Commonwealth Secretariat London UK
House of Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee, London UK
The Chairman, UK Parliamentary Group on Ghana, London UK
Ghana High Commissioner, London UK
Office of the President, Accra, Ghana
The Chief Justice of Ghana, Accra Ghana
Inspector General of Police, Accra Ghana

Dear Sir/Madam

Prosecute president and ministers involved in VVIP cocaine saga

Ghanaians Abroad Against Corruption after months of investigation and further probing into the timely arrest, trial and sentencing of Madam Nayele Ametefe, aka Ruby Mahama, aka Ruby Appiah to 8 years imprisonment for the trafficking of 12.5 kg of cocaine worth 3 million pounds into the United Kingdom last year, can conclude without a shadow of doubt that the government of Ghana, led by Mr John Dramani Mahama, who are supposed to represent the interests of our country, use state power and resources, to facilitate, give cover, protect and direct the affairs of drug traffickers from start to finish.
The facilitation, protection and direction of Madam Nayele Ametefe, also known as Ruby Mahama, also known as Ruby Appiah, to smuggle drugs to the United Kingdom came right from the top of government and spread to the bottom with one Alhaji Dawood, a presidential staffer , a key campaigner and a close associate of the President becoming the scapegoat. We call for the prosecution of the following public officials who are the real culprits:
The conduct of Mr Victor Smith, the High commissioner to the UK has been one of misconduct and collusion and we demand his recall and removal as High commissioner to the UK. Mr Smith was untruthful to the people of Ghana .It is a fact he used state resources to meet this woman at Heathrow airport and when she was arrested proceeded to procure legal services for her, even though she carried an Austrian passport and she used multiple identities which itself is a serious crime. The issue we found mind boggling was what was a Ghanaian diplomat doing, offering protection to a woman claiming Austrian citizenship yet the Austrian government did not even lift a finger to help her? He even went as far as to visit Miss Nayele Ametefe in the company of other embassy officials in prison, attended the court hearing and the sentencing .It is an open secret among Ghanaians in the UK Mr Smith does not even respond to calls from Ghanaian organisations in the UK or Ghanaians facing worse problems such as housing, students on scholarship whose fees have not been paid and immigration problems yet he runs around chaperoning drug traffickers!
Mr Smith has been deceitful and contradicted himself when he tried to justify his actions, then later backtracked and said he had acted on instructions from above. He has brought disgrace to Ghana and must be prosecuted!

We find it very strange but not surprising the conduct of Mr Mark Woyongo, the then Minister of Interior who was promoted to the Defence portfolio after his role in this scandal .As a minister he failed to take responsibility for his department .He has tried to play smart by keeping quiet and not commenting at all throughout this case. NACOB as an agency falls under his ministry. The diabolical dissolution of the NACOB board and the reaction from Naval commander Assassie Gyimah (rtd) who said “Have we been sacrificed to appease an angry god” still rings in the corridors of power. Mr Woyongo’s ostrich behaviour may have fooled some people including the President, but it has not fooled us, neither has it fooled the people of Ghana. He is complicit in this affair and we call for him to step down and face further investigation.
Dr Edward Omane Boamah, the Minister for Communications should also consider his position and step down. He changed his story several times. First he denied that such a case had occurred, and then he denied that miss nayele Ametefe had an Austrian passport only to backtrack after an Austrian Newspaper Kronen Zeitung published in its 20th November 2014 edition that the lady possessed an Austrian passport and even waved her diplomatic passport to gain her entry and immunity from arrest. He made things worse by saying” if she did use a diplomatic passport then we will follow that line” It is clear Dr Boamah sought to engage in spin and Propaganda to deceive the public thus he has brought his office into public ridicule and disrepute .He should also resign.
Madam Hannah Tetteh, the Minister for Foreign Affairs cannot escape her role in this affair. In fact we are surprised she has not been sacked from her post. She goofed first by lying that the VVIP lounge was used, and then in an interview on Radio Gold said Miss Nayele Ametefe believed she was carrying Gold bars and not cocaine .If that was the case why did she plead guilty in court to smuggling cocaine? It is clear that she facilitated her use of the VVIP, her travel arrangements and used her office to instruct the high commission in the United Kingdom .Her lies and her attempt to twist the truth make her unfit to hold her position. We also disappointed that she and Victor smith facilitated for two other girls, who were also on the flight to flee and escape to neighbouring Togo and she should resign!
Last but not the least we believe that President John Mahama cannot extract himself from this saga. His desperate public relations stunt in an interview with Mr Paul Adom Octhere of Metro TV coupled with his hurriedly organised interview on Aljazeera television show clearly that he was deeply shocked and rattled that his very close friend Nayele Ametefe had been arrested. If he claims he and his family are not involved can he answer these questions for us?

a. Why his personal telephone number on the mobile phones confiscated by the British police?
b. Why is the personal telephone number of Ibrahim Mahama, his brother on one of the three mobile phones seized by the British police?
c. Can he explain a picture of him and Nayele Ametefe jet skiing on a beach resort which was circulated on social media and other news portals for which he has kept a deathly silence?
d. Why did he dissolve the Board of NACOB without any suspension, arrest of personnel and investigation into their role in this sad affair?
e. Why did he not reconstitute the board of NACOB? Did he deliberately paralysing the institution from carrying out a proper investigation as it may lead all the way to him? Was he trying to cover his tracks?
Some individuals were arrested including one Alhaji Dawood, a member of the NDC and a key organiser of the NDC Zongo for Mahama Campaign in Election 2012.When the case was brought before a local court it was a huge surprise that Alhaji Dawood and his cronies were granted bail and that state prosecutors strangely failed to show up in court. This sad orchestration shows that President Mahama manipulated events and that the government was deeply involved in the drug trade.
The current government in opposition made so much noise about drugs but in government they have made it into a profitable enterprise and failed miserably to consolidate the successes chalked by the previous governments. First the late President Professor Mills, expressed disquiet, in a WikiLeaks report in 2011 i he had reason to believe some of his close aides were involved or had links to drug traffickers. In October 2012 Cocaine miraculously turned into baking soda after examination in a police forensic lab .Then in June 2013 Solomon Adelaquaye, who was in charge of security at the Kotoka International Airport was arrested in the USA for assisting a drug courier import a kilogram of the drug into the US .It is interesting to note that the government on its website only suspended the contract it had with Sohin security who provided security at the airport but did not revoke it. So we ask why this company still in charge of security at the airport is. Then in Nov 2013 NACOB in a statement published on the government of Ghana website said it had arrested a vessel with cocaine worth a street value of 50 million dollars! This vessel together with the cocaine cannot be located with the crew mysteriously allowed to leave Ghana without any arrest and prosecution!

Our calls for a thorough re investigation and robust prosecution of the above government officials is borne without any malice but to serve as an example to public officials who use the positions they have been entrusted with to enrich themselves, subvert and weaken the state.

Yours Sincerely,

Dr Edward Nii Boye Ashong PHD
Ghanaians Abroad against Corruption
Suite 141 , Fordham House
London E9 9SR

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