NCA alleged $4m scandal trial adjourned

BY: Mabel Aku Baneseh
Mr. Joe Anokye
Mr. Joe Anokye

The hearing of the $4 million alleged scandal at the National Communication Authority (NCA) was adjourned yesterday to enable the state to produce the minutes of the 42nd board meeting of the NCA.

The adjournment was occasioned by pleas from two of the defence lawyers to the court.

According to Messrs Thaddeus Sory and Godwin Edudzi Tameklo, the minutes of the 42nd board meeting would enable them to adequately cross-examine the second prosecution witness, Dr Yaw Isaac Ani, a Deputy Director-General of the NCA.

Dr Ani told the court during cross-examination that he was present at the 42nd board meeting of the NCA.

Mr Sory, the counsel for the former Board Chairman of the NCA, Mr Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie, informed the court that he needed the documents before he could proceed to cross-examine the witness.

The court, presided over by Mr Justice Eric Kyei-Baffour, obliged and indicated that Mr Sory could pause his cross-examination for Mr Tameklo to begin his until the document was made available.

However, Mr Tameklo, representing the former Director-General of the NCA, Mr William Tevie, also informed the court that he was unable to proceed with the cross-examination because he intended to rely heavily on the same minutes.

Counsel said there was an overriding charge of conspiracy and if the minutes was made available and admitted in evidence, he might not cross-examine the witness.

According to counsel, the minutes was also to discuss the agenda on whether or not excess expenditures (budget overruns) were ratified.

Mr Tameklo averred that the minutes would show that the Finance Committee of which the witness was a member had the opportunity to discuss into detail the $4 million paid to Infralocks Development Limited (IDL).

Counsel prayed the court to grant a short adjournment in order to do substantial justice to prevent his clients from suffering injustice.

No delay

Mr Justice Kyei-Baffour accordingly adjourned the case to tomorrow but urged the defence team to request for all needed documents on time in order not to occasion undue delays.

Earlier, Mr Sory tendered in a letter signed by then Coordinator of National Security requesting for assistance to procure cyber security equipment through the witness.

The court admitted the document into evidence, although the Director of Public of Prosecutions, Mrs Yvonne Attakorah-Obuobisa, objected on grounds that the witness was not the originator/author of the letter.

Trial

Nana Owusu Ensaw, Alhaji Salifu Mimina Osman, both former board members, Tevie, Baffoe-Bonnie, and a businessman, George Derek Oppong, have been accused of playing various roles leading to the loss of $4 million to the state.

The accused persons have been charged with diverse counts of willfully causing financial loss of $4 million to the state.
 
They have been accused of engaging in infractions in the procurement of listening devices for the state.
The accused persons have denied the charges.

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