SC dismisses Woyome’s application

AGBESI WOYOMIMr. Alfred Agbesi Woyome’s applications filed at the Supreme Court (SC) for stay of proceedings as well as stay of temporary order on his shares in 11 companies by the Attorney-General (A-G) regarding the repayment of his GH¢51.2 million indebtedness to the state, was yesterday dismissed.

The single judge, Mr. Justice Anthony A. Benin, described the applications of the Ghanaian businessman, as unmeritorious when he gave his ruling.

The ruling was in connection with the application’s motion that pursuant to the Constitution 1992, article 134, and the Supreme Court Rules, 1996 Rule 73, the orders by the A-G to orally examine him (Woyome) and imposing charging order on any of all of his shares “are incompetent and cannot be maintained.”

According to the judge, nowhere did Mr. Woyome state in his applications that he would suffer hardship or irreparable damage if the court granted the A-G permission to orally examine him or freeze his shares with the 11 companies temporary.

“By court, there is no merit in the application for stay of proceedings, and it is hereby dismissed,” he said, and adjourned the case to Monday, July 24, 2017, for continuation.

It is now clear that all is set for the A-G to subject Mr. Woyome to oral examination as to whether he owed the state any money and also how the money was dissipated.

The SC’s ruling brought relief to the Deputy Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mr. Godfred Yeboah Dame, who remarked “definitely the day of reckoning will come,” adding that “With the dismissal of the application, the doors are now open for the case,” he stated.

But, Mr. Ken Anku, counsel for Mr. Woyome, told the court that his client (Woyome) was indisposed, and had been given two weeks by a medical doctor at the 37 Military Hospital to rest, and produced a medical report to that effect.

Mr. Woyome on Thursday, June 29, 2017, applied to the Apex court to be granted the following as regards his oral examination by the A-G.

“That the applications for oral examination and for the imposition of a charging order on my shares before a single Justice of the Supreme Court are basically applications under the constitution, 1992 article 134 and the Supreme Court Rules, 1996 Rule 73.”

He said: “That in the circumstances, the applications before His Lordship, A.A. Benin (JSC) sitting as a single Justice of the Supreme Court pursuant to the Constitution, 1992 article 134 and the Supreme Court Rules, 1996 Rule 73 are incompetent and cannot be maintained.

“That accordingly, the orders for my oral examination under the High Court Rules, 2004 C.I. 47 order 46 cannot be sustained and ought to be stayed pending the determination of my application to set aside the orders of the Attorney-General dated 8th June, 2017.”

But Mr. Dame argued that the applicant did not state whether the cause pursued by the government to claim the money would bring untold hardship and irreparable damage to Mr. Woyome.

“Throughout his application there is nothing showing that the oral examination will occasion any hardship on him if the case proceeds. The time is up and proceedings must continue”, Mr. Dame said.

By Castro Zangina-Tong      

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