Chief in court for forgery of document

law-and-justiceAn “ancient” document titled “Report on Enquiry into Akwamus and Kwahus Land Dispute, 1845” seemed to have been forged and that it was not in the National Archives since 1845 as had been indicated.

After some investigations, interesting revelations seem to be coming out and witnesses are being brought to testify on the authenticity of the said “ancient” document.

Mr Confidence Kodzo Gadzekpo, a former Chief Archivist at the then National Archives, appeared as a witness at a High Court in Koforidua, presided over by Justice Henry A. Kwofie, on the case, “The Republic versus Nana Anku Dododja Didieye III.”

The witness said hile in office in 1990 Nana Anku Dododja Didieye III, Odikro of Abomasarefo, a village in the Eastern Region, brought the “ancient” document to him for storage in the archives.

He said knowing that the document was not “ancient” but a private document, he classified it as Special Collections (SC) which meant “not a colonial or government record” and therefore stored it as such in the archives and gave it a certificate of authentication.

Mr Gadzekpo said while at home on pension, his successor called him on phone and invited him to the office to address a problem.  When had there he saw police personnel wanting to know the authenticity of the document.

According to him, he informed the police that the document was not a colonial record but that it was brought by the accused person, Nana Anku Dododja Didieye.

Mr Gadzekpo said after two weeks of meeting the police, Nana Anku Dododja Didieye came to him at his residence and threatened him that they both would be imprisoned if he did not lie to save himself.

“He took me to a friend of his and they convinced me to deny in court what I had told the police,” he said.

Mr Gadzekpo told the court that after telling the lie, he felt guilty and approached a lawyer and made a statutory declaration to annul the lies he had told.

The court therefore adjourned sitting to March 20.

Allegation has it that between 1989 and 1990, Nana Anku Dododja Didieye visited the National Archives several times obtaining certain historical documents of the Gold Coast from which he compiled the said “ancient” document.

It was alleged that he later presented it to the National Archives claiming it was an “ancient” document prepared by certain Major Cocaine of the Gold Coast regiment.

According to him he found the document in a horn of an animal in a shrine of Abomasarefo and thought it would be of interest to the archives.

A portion of the document is alleged to contain a receipt indicating that Abomasarefo and its environs were bought by the accused person’s great-grandfather, Kwaku Dedeayie, alias ‘Bareyo’ from the Akwamus in 1845 for 250 pounds sterling.

The allegation continued that the accused person later went back to the archives and obtained an authenticated copy of the document he had presented and petitioned the Kwahu Traditional Council in 1991 claiming the Abomasarefo land from the Bukuruwa stool.

With the authenticated copy of the document as evidence  he won favour from the Traditional Council, obtained favourable judgment at the Koforidua High Court afterwards and again emerged victorious at the court of appeal with regard to the same document.

However, the Bukuruwa stool felt strongly that the accused person’s claim was strange and fraudulent and therefore mandated one Kwabena Siaw, the complainant, to undertake an independent investigation to ascertain the genuineness of the 1845 report.

Kwabena siaw’s investigations seem to be revealing that the document might have been forged and has since reported the case to the police for further investigations.

The document is said to have been tested by the Police Forensic Laboratory with which report is yet to be presented to the court regarding its authenticity.

Source: GNA

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