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General News of Thursday, 12 October 2017


UK bank apologises to Asantehene over diplomatic passport claim

The Ghana International Bank has admitted it erred with some claims it made against the Asantehene as part of its defense in a case before a UK employment tribunal.

The Bank is in court defending why its dismissal of an official, Mark Frank Arthur over a transaction is justified.

Mr Arthur had sued the Bank after he was dismissed for accepting to deposit £350,000 into the Asantehene’s account in the UK.

He admitted before the tribunal he accepted the cash from Otumfuo without following the anti-money laundering regulations because of the King’s status. But the Bank in its statement of defence Wednesday said its checks revealed the Asantehene’s diplomatic passport had expired.

The Counsel for the Bank apologised to the court for accusing His majesty Asantehene doing a "dodgy deal as the King advised his Claimant that further funds would be deposited SAKA,a company based in Ghana into his account.

The judge had scheduled Thursday for his ruling but postponed it to Monday after the Bank retracted some of its earlier claims.

He also said the Bank’s claim that the money was transacted from Lusaka under “dodgy” circumstances was mistaken.

UK-based journalist Vincent Owusu Appiah told Evans Mensah on Joy FM’s Top Story the judge shook his head after the Bank rendered the apology. The reporter said lawyers for Mr Arthur maintained their client did nothing wrong when he deposited the money on behalf of the King.

There are claims of bad blood between Mr Arthur and the Chief Executive of the Bank, John Mensah who is said to have authorised the transaction. A former employee of the Bank, Raymond Sowah reportedly said the transaction was duly approved by the appropriate officials.

“He proved that the transaction was genuine so they don’t see why Mr Mensah should go and report the matter,” the journalist said of the employee.