Contract wasn’t captured in budget – Prosecution witness

Asafu-Adjei PixMrs. Abena Kwakuo Asafu-Adjei, the Director of Legal Administration at the National Communications Authority (NCA), has told the Accra High Court yesterday that she had not seen the $4million contract document between the authority and Infraloks Development Limited (IDL).

She said not even a copy of the document was in the custody of the NCA.

Mrs. Asafu-Adjei, who is giving evidence as the first prosecution witness in the case in which the former Director-General of the Authority, William Tetteh Tevie and four others are standing trial for willfully causing financial loss of $4 million to state said the document containing the contract came to her attention through the investigator.

Tevie, Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie, a former Board Chairman, Nana Owusu Ensaw, Alhaji Salifu Osman Limuna and George Derek Oppong have been accused of engaging in infractions in the procurement of listening devices to the state.

Led in evidence by Mrs. Yvonne Atakora Obuobisa, the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Mrs. Asafu-Adjei told the court presided by Justice Eric Kyei-Baffour that she is in-charge of all legal documents.

She said that she had oversight responsibility over the procurement division and explained that in every budget year, the various divisions submitted everything they needed to enable them to perform their duties efficiently for approval by the tender committee.

She said if items were to be procured outside the budget, a supplementary budget has to be prepared, adding that the $4 million contract for the procurement of the Cyber Surveillance System  was not captured in the 2015 budget, neither was a supplementary budget prepared.

The court over-ruled preliminary objections by lawyers for the accused in relation to the order of the court at the last adjournment that the prosecution furnishes all documents they intend to rely on to the accused.

Justice Kyei-Baffour told the lawyers that the documents were in the custody of the court registrar as at January 12 and reminded them of objections including the admissibility of evidence should be grounded in law.

According to the facts of the case, Baffoe-Bonnie, Tevie, Osman, a former Deputy National Security Coordinator, were allegedly aided by a private citizen, Oppong to engage in the act.

According to the state, the previous administration had contracted an Israeli company, NSO Group Technology Limited to supply listening equipment at the cost of $6 million to enable the authorities to monitor conversations of persons suspected to be engaged in terror activities.

A local agent, Infraloks Development Limited was also charging $2 million to facilitate the transaction, bringing the total sum to $8 million.

 

By Malik Sullemana         

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