Judge Refuses To Meet Woyome In Chambers

MRS.MARIETTA BREW APPIAH-OPPONG MINISTER FOR JUSTICE AND ATTORNEY GENERALAn Accra High Court judge, Justice John Ajet-Nasam, yesterday turned down a request by businessman, Alfred Agbesi Woyome to meet he and the prosecutors in chambers.

At the end of his cross-examination, Woyome prayed the court to be allowed to meet the judge, the prosecutors, together with his lawyers, for reasons he did not specify, while in the witness box.

However, Justice Ajet-Nasam, declined the request saying it would lead to unnecessary backlash from the public and dent his image.

This was after the Chief State Attorney, Mrs. Yvonne Atakura Obuobisa, had subjected him to a barrage of questions.

Mrs. Obuobisa averred that Woyome petitioned the then Attorney-General and made several false representations, pointing to an inaccurate fact that the state owed him GH¢ 51.2 million.

She insisted that Woyome had made false claims for construction and financial engineering monies in the petition, as well as misinforming the A-G’s Department that, he was given a letter which indicated that he won a bid to construct two stadia.

Referring to page 9 of Woyo-me’s petition to the AG’s Department, Mrs. Obuobisa opined that his assertions that the letter was addressed to him (Mr. Woyome) was a blatant misrepresentation because the committee set up by the government to choose the best bidder never wrote to him, but Woyome disagreed.

She said the demand of two per cent by Woyome over a financial assistance of 22 million Euros from the Bank of Austria, was misleading as it did not have any connection with the contract.

Woyome, who at this point was fumbling with the word incorrect, explained that then Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Osafo Marfo, communicated the winning of the bid to him, by personally giving him the letter.

However, Mrs. Obuobisa said, that could not be the case, as the letter being talked about by Woyome was written by a member of the committee and addressed to the minister instead.

She challenged him to read the letter to the court which Woyome did, by telling the court that the letter was addressed to the minister and not him.

Woyome, however, explained that though the letter was not addressed to him, he was given a copy and was told verbally by the minister that he had won the bid.

According to him, that was enough for him to accept that he won the bid for which reason he flew to Austria to solicit for funds for the project.

He said he hired consultants and acquired offices in Ghana to ensure that he was given the needed amount from the Bank of Austria to construct the stadia.

“In my petition to the A-G’s Department, I explained these issues and demanded only for financial engineering,which was later cancelled by the government,” he said.

Woyome also told the court that the money was paid to him by the government, after the A-G’s Department sought approval from the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Sports and other agencies involved in the contract, however, Mrs. Obuobisa disagreed.

She said that the A-G’s decision to pay the money was premised on the false representation made in the petition.

The court adjourned to November 10.

By Charles Amankwa        

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