Police bust fake ECG task force in Kumasi

Author: Donald Ato Dapatem
From left: Prince Annum, Kofi Obeng and Michael Kwaku Acheampong
From left: Prince Annum, Kofi Obeng and Michael Kwaku Acheampong

Six persons, including three staff members of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), have been arrested by the police for allegedly forming an ECG task force and duping unsuspecting customers.

Members of the illegal task force were arrested by the Kumasi Zongo police at Kyerekrom, near Pakoso, where they had gone to collect GH¢1, 500 from a customer they accused of tempering with her meter.

The three ECG staff have been identified as Forgive K. Gbedege, Philip Owusu and Stephen Obeng, aka Shalama, while their accomplices are Prince Annum, 37, Kofi Obeng, 41, and Michael Kwaku Acheampong, 31.

Operation

Briefing the Daily Graphic in Kumasi on Thursday, the Public Relations Manager for the Ashanti Region, Mr Erasmus Kyere Baidoo, said on January 31, 2018, Annum, Obeng and Acheampong went to a house at Kyerekrom to inspect the meter of the house.

Mr Baidoo said the three, who were not staff of the ECG, climbed to where the electricity meter of the house was and after some time came back to accuse the occupants of the house of tampering with the ECG meter.

He said they threatened to take the occupants to the offices of the ECG where they would be made to pay a huge fine.

According to Mr Baidoo, the three suspects demanded that the landlady pay GH¢4,000 so they drop the case as it was likely she would be made to pay in excess of the amount if taken to the ECG offices.

He said after further discussions, the suspects agreed to collect GH¢1,500.

Mr Baidoo explained that convinced that she had not tampered with the meter, the landlady rushed to the offices of the ECG and informed them about the happenings and also supported her report with CCTV recordings of her interactions with the people.

Police ambush

He said officials of the ECG with the help of police officers laid ambush around the woman’s house for the suspects to return for the GH¢1,500.

Surprisingly, he said, three staff of ECG in a company-branded vehicle appeared at the scene in the company of the three suspects to collect the money.

Mr Baidoo said the suspects were arrested after Annum, Obeng and Acheampong had collected the money.

He said when the six suspects were sent to the police station, the ECG staff claimed that they were informed by Annum, Obeng and Acheampong that they had detected that a woman had tampered with an ECG meter.

He said the ECG staff denied any knowledge about the move to dupe the woman.

Police

The Zongo District Police Commander, Superintendent of Police, Mr Ameyaw Afriyie, told the Daily Graphic that the three ECG staff were being investigated to ascertain their claim that they did not have any idea about the scheme.

He said the other three were being processed for court.