Lawyer for Seidu Agongo ends cross-examination of Dr Amoah

Mr Benson Nutsukpui, the Counsel for Seidu Agongo, the CEO of Agricult Ghana Limited, has ended his cross-examination of Dr Franklin Manu Amoah, witness in the case involving Dr Stephen Opuni, the former CEO of COCOBOD.

He told an Accra High Court that on February 2017 at the COCOBOD Head Office, Dr Amoah, the Executive Director of Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG), together with two others had a meeting to discuss the efficacy of tested agro-chemicals by CRIG.

In response, Dr Amoah said he could not remember exactly having any meeting with Dr Richard Adu Acheampong and Dr Anim Kwapong at the COCOBOD Head Office.

Dr Opuni and Seidu Agongo are facing 27 charges, including defrauding by false pretence, wilfully causing financial loss to the state, money laundering, corruption by public officer and contravention of the Public Procurement Act.

They have pleaded not guilty and have been granted a GH¢300,000.00 each self-recognisance bail by the Court.

When asked, whether he knew about a field report made on April 2015, the witness said in April 2015, he was at COCOBOD and was not preview to any of such reports.

The Counsel asked the witness, whether he had ever been influenced by any other condition, apart from his scientific knowledge and integrity in taking decisions but Dr Amoah answered in the negative saying, “My Lord not to the best of my knowledge.”

Mr Nutsukpui told the witness that, he confirmed during the Adu Ampomah committee that he was not influenced by Dr Opuni’s directive in decision making but he said “I told the committee that I was in compliance with Dr Opuni’s directives.”

“I put it to you that you were specifically asked whether you succumbed to Dr Opuni’s pressure and you responded in the negative,” the Counsel asked but the witness said he did not succumb to the pressure but he was his boss, who gave the directive and all persuasion to let him know it was not in the interest of the sector proved futile.”

“We had no option left than to forward the recommendation and the report for approval,” he said.

At the last adjourned date the Counsel for Seidu Agongo told the court that there is a detailed handing over note for Dr Amoah.

“The handing over note was prepared by one Dr Anim Kwapong, the former Acting Executive, Director of Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG) to Dr Amoah on his second coming as the Executive Director of CRIG,” he said.

In a further cross-examination, Dr Amoah denied ever receiving any notes from the former Acting Executive Director, saying “when I enquire from him, he told me he was directed to handover the notes to Mr Joseph Aidoo, the CEO of COCOBOD.

The Court presided over by Justice Clemence Honyenugah, an Appeal Court Judge, sitting as an additional High Court Judge, adjourned the case to Monday October 29, for the A-G to present its second prosecution witness.

Source: GNA

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