ASSISTANT SUPERINTENDENT of Police Odame Okyere, has denied an assertion that the money paid to Alfred Agbesi Woyome by the state was based on a judgment by the Commercial Court in his favour.
ASP Okyere, the investigator in the Woyome criminal case, yesterday maintained that it was the first instalment of GH?17 million out of the three instalments which the court authorized the state to pay to Woyome.
The investigator made this denial when he was being cross-examined by Osarfo Buabeng, lawyer for Woyome, who insisted that all the money paid to Woyome was as a result of the judgment by the court.
The investigator explained that after the first instalment, the Attorney-General took steps to have the judgment awarded to Woyome set aside. However, the government and Woyome later agreed to pay the two instalments through settlement.
Mr Buabeng then put it to the witness that the two instalments were done after a pre-trial settlement between the parties at the court but the witness denied knowledge of that.
The witness held the view that parties in a case could compromise judgment and then seek approval from the court. However, Justice John Ajet-Nasam interjected and said he did not appreciate that point, stating that such a decision by the parties would be contemptuous.
The witness earlier maintained that a one billion Euro offer from Bank Austria had nothing to do with the government of Ghana. He stated that the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of CAN 2008 was an autonomous entity whose decision was not binding on government.
However, Mr Buabeng insisted it had something to do with the government because letters from the bank were addressed to the Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of CAN 2008.
Mr. Buaben further pointed out to the witness that the tender by LOC which was inviting bidders from outside the country and within the country for the construction of the stadia had the Coat of Arms embossed on it to signify that it was acting on behalf of government.
At this juncture, the witness conceded that LOC was acting on behalf of government.
The investigator informed the court that he interrogated Alex Segbefia, deputy Chief of Staff, about Mr. Woyome?s two percent claim for financial engineering and Mr. Segbefia stated that he met Woyome but it was for a different purpose.
ASP Okyere said he could not interrogate Valerie Sawyerr, a deputy Chief of Staff, over the matter. The case has been adjourned to January 30, for further cross-examination.
The trial of Alfred Agbesi Woyome, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) bankroller at an Accra Fast Track High Court is in connection with the receipt of GH?51.28 million alleged fraudulent judgment debt.
Woyome has been charged with causing financial loss to the state and defrauding by false pretences, but he has denied any wrongdoing.
ASP Edward Odame Okyere in his evidence-in-chief had stated that the Bank of Austria where Woyome claimed to have received money for the construction of Stadia for African Cup of Nations (CAN) 2008 had denied that they funded the construction of any stadia in Ghana.
According to him, the bank said in a written correspondence to the state through the Attorney-General that any letters of support given to Woyome were of no legal effect.
The witness also testified that no bidding took place for the construction of the stadia for Confederation of African Football (CAN) 2008 tournament.
The police investigator who appeared as a prosecution witness in the case involving the dubious payment made to Alfred Woyome revealed that Waterville Holdings and Austro Invest had not been formally registered to operate in Ghana.
According to ASP Odame Okyere, the Registrar General?s Department had no formal records of the operations of the two companies which benefitted from the payments of gargantuan judgment debts.
By Mary Anane