Businessman caught selling ‘free fertiliser’

A businessman, Nyarko Abranomah, is facing trial at a Tarkwa Circuit Court for allegedly distributing fertiliser meant for distribution to cocoa farmers by the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) for free.

The court was told that he sold 15 bags of the fertiliser at GH¢140 per bag, thus yielding a total of GH¢2, 100.00.

He was, subsequently, charged with stealing. But, he pleaded not guilty to the charges of conspiracy to commit crime and committing crime.

He has been granted a GH¢7, 000 bail with two sureties to justify.

Prosecuting, Detective Chief Inspector Oscar Amponsah, told the court that the complainant, Mr. Michael Gbedemah, was the National Democratic Congress Constituency Chairman for Prestea Huni/Valley while the accused traded in farm implements at Aboso, in the same district.

According to the prosecutor, on June 3, this year, the complainant was going to Huni/Valley, when he intercepted a Kia truck loaded with fertiliser, which were supposed to be distributed to cocoa farmers free of charge, on behalf of the Ghana Cocoa Board.

He said the complainant enquired from the driver the source of the fertiliser, but he rather directed him to the shop he purchased them from.

The complainant’s investigation revealed that the fertilisers were stolen by the accused, who sold them in his shop.

He said the complainant then reported the matter to the Police, whose independent investigations confirmed the theft and so arrested the accused.

The prosecution said the accused admitted that he owned the shop, but his son, Patrick Ofori Nyarko, sold the items without his consent.

According to the prosecutor, when Nyarko was invited by the Police, he confirmed selling the fertiliser with the explanation that his father had already stocked some fertiliser for sale in the shop, Therefore, he could not differentiate between those meant for sale and the others offered for free. He said the accused person’s son disclosed that he sold 15 bags of the fertiliser at GH¢140.00 each, which amounted to GH¢2,100.00.

However, an audit conducted by the Police revealed that nine of the fertiliser bags were missing.

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