Kufuor drops charges against Mrs. Rawlings

Mrs. Rawlings and husband at Mills' inauguration
Mrs. Rawlings and husband at Mills' inauguration

The former President of Ghana, J. A. Kufuor before leaving office January 6, 2009, dropped charges against the wife of former President Rawlings, Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings.

According to a report in The GhanaianTimes issue of Tuesday January 13, 2009, the Attorney-General’s Department last week has consequently filed a notice at an Accra Fast Track High Court to discontinue trial of the wife of the former President.

Mrs. Rawlings was standing trial for her alleged involvement in the divestiture of the Nsawam Cannery.

According to the newspaper a source has said the Court, presided over by Justice Edward Asante has fixed Thursday January 15 to officially discharge the notice.

According to The Ghanaian Times, when the Court Registrar, Rexford Gyimah was contacted, he confirmed the story but declined to comment.

The newspaper also quoted the counsel for Mrs. Rawlings, Mr. Tony Lithur, who also confirmed knowledge of the notice but said, “no reasons were given” for the action.

Mrs. Rawlings was facing eight counts of conspiracy, causing loss to public property, dishonestly obtaining public property by false pretences, obtaining public property by false statement, conspiracy to utter forged documents and uttering forged documents.

She is being tried together with Emmanuel Agbodo, former Executive Secretary of the Divestiture Implementation Committee (DIC), Thomas Benson Owusu, former DIC Accountant, Kwarne Peprah, former Finance Minister and DIC Chairman and Fanny Sherry Ayittey, Director of Carridem Development Company Limited.

They have all pleaded not guilty and are on self-cognizance bail.

The prosecution’s case was that in the late 90s, government received approval to divest the Nsawam Cannery to Carridem which had won the bid through the normal process.

Carridem was supposed to have paid a 10 percent non-refundable commitment fee in the purchase of the cannery. In addition, some amounts of money should have been submitted with the final Sales and Purchase Agreement (SPA) which was 2.7 billion cedis paid within 12 months, among other conditions.

It was after the Auditor-General, in pursuance of Article 121 of the Constitution decided to conduct a routine audit of organisations that he detected the anomalies in the Nsawam Cannery affair.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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