You are here: HomeNews2016 01 25Article 410368

General News of Monday, 25 January 2016


Throw out 'smokescreen' Woyome suit - Amidu tells Supreme Court

Former Attorney General, Martin Amidu, says a suit challenging the Supreme Court’s ruling that ordered Alfred Woyome to return 51.2 million cedis to the state has no legal standing.

Mr Amidu, believes “common sense should have warned the Plaintiff” that the Supreme Court has no jurisdiction to set aside the earlier ruling or review same.

The former Attorney General is the 3rd Defendant in the suit that also involves the current Attorney General, Marietta Brew-Oppong (1st Defendant), and Alfred Woyome (2nd Defendant).

Abdulai Yusif Fanash Muhammed, a resident of Hohoe Zongo in the Volta Region, wants the Supreme Court’s decision asking Mr Woyome, a businessman, to return 51.2 million cedis to the state declared null and void.

The Hohoe Zongo resident filed a writ two weeks ago in which he argues the Supreme Court lacked jurisdiction to hear the case involving Mr. Woyome and to make the orders it made.

Mr Muhammed wants a "Declaration that the financial engineering claims by Alfred Agbesi Woyome arising out of the tender bid by Vamed Engineering GmbH/Waterville Holdings during the procurement process from June 2005 until its wrongful abrogation in August 2005 is not an international business transaction within the meaning of Article 181 of the Constitution, 1992."

After the Supreme Court ruling, Mr Woyome promised to pay back to the state the 51.2 million cedis. The Court ruled the money was obtained fraudulently through a judgment debt.

However, a week to the self-imposed deadline for payment of the money, Abdulai Yusif Fanash Muhammed, went to the Supreme Court arguing the court was wrong, scuttling a process to commence retrieval of the money.

Mr Muhammed is believed to be doing the bidding of the embattled businessman, Mr Woyome.

According to Mr Amidu, the timing of the suit, the lax attitude of the Attorney General and Mr Woyome – with regards to their delayed response the court action – is nothing but a “smokescreen” aimed at impeding the retrieval of the fraudulently obtained money.

His responses to the Abdulai Yusif Fanash Muhammed’s suit (published in full below) states in part that:

“…the commencement of this incompetent action by the Plaintiff on 22 December 2015 provided the 1st Defendant through His Excellency President John Dramani Mahama the shameless cover behind which to tell the public (for whose benefit the judgment debt in Amidu (No 3) (supra) was given and ordered on 29 July 2014 inures) on 12 January 2016 at a media encounter broadcast to the whole world that the 1st Defendant was unable to execute the ruling and orders in the said Amidu (No 3) because of this pending action: the 2nd Defendant on his part used it as a cover to purport to apply to this Court for a suspension of the ruling and orders in Amidu (No 3) (supra) pending the hearing and disposal of this incompetent action as a means of buying time to prevent the 3rd Defendant from bringing any action against him for disobedience to the orders of this Court under Article 2 of the 1992 Constitution.”

The Supreme Court has set February 2, 2016, for preliminary objections against the matter.

Mr Amidu commenced the process that got the Supreme Court to declare that Mr Woyome obtained the 51.2 million cedis fraudulently.

The Citizen Vigilante, as he has come to be known, argued that the contracts on the basis of which Woyome made the claims against the state were international business transactions that were not laid before Parliament for approval as required by Article 181 of the Constitution.

He said to that extent, the contracts contravened the constitution and therefore, "null, void, and without operative effect."

The Supreme Court in a June 14, 2013, ruling, agreed with Mr Amidu that the contracts with Waterville Holdings were international business transactions that ought to have been laid before parliament for approval.

To the extent that this was not done, the Court held, the contracts were null and void and of no effect.

After a persistent battle in court, he obtained a favourable judgment on July 29, 2014, which asked Woyome to return the money to the state.