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General News of Tuesday, 31 March 2015


Woyome agrees to cough up Ghc51m by close of 2015

The embattled businessman acquitted and discharged in a criminal prosecution over the Ghc51.2 million judgment debt scandal, has agreed to refund the money by the end of 2015. This follows a civil suit at the Supreme Court that ruled that he refunded the money because the payment was unconstitutional.

Officials of the Attorney-General's Department had gone to the Supreme Court today, to seek directives as to how to retrieve the money.

Lawyer for Alfred Woyome, Sarfo Buabeng, told the court his client, who could not appear in Court in today, had agreed to pay the amount in full by the end of the year. He added that the absence of his client in court, was to enable him speed up processes elsewhere in repaying the amount.

The Lawyer however expressed surprise as to why the Attorney-General sought o seek directives from the Supreme Court to retrieve the money when the Supreme Court ruling was clear and unambiguous.

Moreover he said his client had already agreed to pay the money and so there was no need for today's court proceedings. The Supreme Court however declared today, that the AG's department had the power to retrieve the money and directed it to do so.

Mr. Woyome was on March 12 absolved by an Accra High Court of any wrongdoing in the receipt of GH¢51.2 million in judgment debt from the state- a ruling which only saved him from going to jail in the meantime.

This is because the AG's Department has also appealed against the judgment of Justice John Ajet-Nassam, describing it as “wrongful”.

President John Dramani Mahama is reported to have backed the AG to "use all lawful means" to retrieve the money.

Although Mr. Woyome has called for the resignation of Mrs. Appiah-Oppong in pursuing a criminal charge against him as per previous relationship between them, the Attorney General is expected to lead prosecution at the Supreme Court as she maintains her interest in the case is only for the state.

The Supreme Court in July 2014, in a case that was filed by an individual, and one-time Attorney-General Martin Amidu, ruled that the money paid to Alfred Agbesi Woyome had no legal basis and so must be repaid to the state.

The businessman, who claims to be a financier of the incumbent National Democratic Congress, had been accused of illegally receiving 51 million cedis for a role he never played in the construction of stadia for the CAN 2008 tournament held in Ghana.