Ex-Minister, Denies Knowledge Of Bidding Process - Woyome's trial

BY: Story: Stephen Sah/Daily Graphic

A Former Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, Wednesday told the Financial Division of the Fast Track High Court that he was unaware of anything relating to the bidding process for the CAN 2008 stadia project.

He said apart from the fact that he wrote an introduction letter for Mr Alfred Agbesi Woyome to enable him to raise funds for the rehabilitation of stadia for the CAN 2008 tournament, he knew nothing about the project.

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Mr Agyemang-Manu was testifying under cross-examination by Mr Osafo Buabeng, counsel for Woyome, in the case in which Woyome is standing trial for allegedly defrauding the state of GH¢51.2 million

The witness said he was aware of a committee headed by the then Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) but he did not read the committee’s report.

Furthermore, he said he was aware of a technical committee but he did not read its report.

Mr Agyemang-Manu said he was not aware that the Bank of Austria made any delivery to the government based on the arrangement by Woyome.

When counsel said paragraph three of the introduction letter written for Woyome indicated that the government would not take any responsibility for any deal, contractual or otherwise, referred by Woyome or Vamed, the witness replied that it was correct.

However, he said that was not necessarily in relation to the three banks, on the one hand, and Woyome and Vamed, on the other, and that the letter was only saying that the government had not contracted Woyome to do any work on its behalf.

The witness had earlier testified that in April 2005, Woyome had gone to his (witness’) office that he (Woyome) had seen a publication for expression of interest for the construction of stadia in which he was interested.

He said Woyome then told him (witness) that he (Woyome) was going to meet with three banks to ask for a concessionary loan, after which the witness consulted the then Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, on the meeting with Woyome.

The witness said after listening to him, Mr Osafo-Maafo gave the go-ahead that Woyome be given the introduction letter, which was issued to Woyome and dated May 4, 2005.

Mr Agyemang-Manu said the disclaimer was inserted in the letter because Woyome was not acting for the government but himself and also the government did not receive any money in respect of the letter given to Woyome.

The matter was adjourned to November 8, 2012 to enable the prosecution to bring another witness.

Story: Stephen Sah/Daily Graphic