After Testifying For Gov’t In NCA Case
Lawyer for the former Board Chairman of the National Communication Authority (NCA), Eugene Baffuor Bonnie, has accused the Director of Legal Services at NCA, Abena Asafu-Adjei, of being on vengeful mission against his client for asking her to proceed on leave.
Lawyer Thaddeus Sory, who begun cross-examining the government witness, suggested to her that she was unhappy with the former Board Chairman, hence her testimony against him and the four others in the US$4 million NCA case at an Accra Fast Track High Court commercial division, presided over by Justice Kyei Baffour.
The money, according to the government led Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Gloria Akuffo, was allegedly withdrawn from the NCA account to purchase cyber surveillance equipment for the National Security Secretariat, but this was not done.
Mrs. Asafu-Adjei, previously a legal director at the Ghana Cocoa Board (CCOBOD), insists the purchase was not approved by the Board to the best of her knowledge.
But Mr. Sory, explained that this was because it was during his tenure that Mrs. Asafu-Adjei, the wife of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Nsuta-Kwamang Beposo in the Ashanti Region, Kwame Asafu-Adjei, was compelled to proceed on leave
“You don’t like the first accused person and that if you had any opportunity to pay him back, you will do so”.
Mrs. Asafu-Adjei, who is the first prosecution witness in the case, replied, “that is not the case”.
The NCA Legal Director, had claimed that minutes of board meetings during the period, 2015 till date, does not show any request and approval brought before members of the board.
Earlier on Tuesday, she told the court that, she had no knowledge of the supposed contract signed between the NCA and Infralocks Development Limited.
According to her, as head of the NCA’s legal division, although she is responsible for the drafting of contractual documents, she had no knowledge of this particular contract.
The witness further added that, she only came across the contract, when the investigators handling the case, came to her office and handed the document to her.
Mrs. Asafu-Adjei, also added that the only request for external support was in regard to some GH¢2 million cedis for the Ghana Broadcasting Cooperation (GBC).
She since brought her testimony in chief to an end.
The Akufo-Addo government, ahead of the trial, had claimed that the former Director General of the NCA, William Tevie and four others, had perpetuated fraud against the state and caused financial loss to the state in the US$6 million contract signed between the NCA and Infraloks Development Limited (IDL).
The five, the government said, fraudulently withdrew US$4 million from NCA accounts without justification.
The Minister of Information, Mustphapa Hamid, had publicly indicated that an Israeli company, NSO Group Technology Limited, was contracted to supply the surveillance equipment at the cost of $6 million, to enable National Security monitor conversations of persons believed to be engaged in terrorism.
IDL was also reportedly charging US$2 million to facilitate the transaction, bringing the total sum to US$8 million
But the three, through the said contract, allegedly withdrew $4 million from the accounts of the NCA and have failed to account for it.
But only US$1 million was allegedly paid into the accounts of the Israeli company.