Supreme Court orders sale of Woyome’s assets

Alfred Agbesi Woyome

The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the State to sell off some assets of Mr Alfred Agbesi Woyome’s to offset the GH¢51.2 million debt owed by the businessman to the State.

The properties included two executive buildings located at Trassaco, two residential buildings at Caprice and Abelenkpe all in Accra, the office complex of Anator Holdings, as well as a mining quarry in the Eastern Region.

Delivering its Judgment, the Supreme Court presided over by a single Judge, Justice Alfred Benin said the claim by UT Bank that Woyome used the two buildings at Trasacco as collateral for a loan was false as they did not provide any credible evidence to substantiate their claim.

He said all evidence pointed to the fact that both buildings as well as the office of Anator Holdings were indeed owned by Mr Woyome and not anyone else.

The court then ordered that all the properties identified by the State which were estimated at GH¢20 million be sold to satisfy some of the judgement debt wrongfully paid to him by the State.

A cost of GH¢60,000.00 each was awarded against defunct UT Bank and Anator Holdings Limited.

The State had earlier identified some properties owned by Mr. Woyome which it believes could help retrieve some of the GH¢51.2 million judgement debt he received from the state unlawfully.

However, the defunct UT Bank had claimed some of the properties identified by the State as theirs.

It was the claim of lawyers of the Bank that Woyome, used the said properties as collateral for loans at the bank which he failed to pay back.

They alleged that their ownership claim of the properties was based on the failure of Woyome to pay back the loans and thus these assets automatically become that of the bank.

The other company, Anator Holdings, on the other hand, claimed that it owned the quarry which the State said belonged to Mr Woyome.

The State represented by the Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, argued that there was no evidence to show that the said properties were used as collateral by Woyome to secure loans from UT Bank.

He said the properties were owned by Mr. Woyome and therefore prayed the court to declare same as true to pave way for the state to sell them.

The Supreme Court, on July 29, 2014, ordered Mr Woyome to refund GH¢51.2 million to the State on the grounds that he got the money out of unconstitutional and invalid contracts between the State and Waterville Holdings Limited in 2006 for the construction of stadia for CAN 2008.

The court held that the contracts upon which Mr Woyome made and received the claim were in contravention of Article 181 (5) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, which requires such contracts to be laid before and approved by Parliament.

On March 1, 2016, Mr Woyome prayed the court to give him three years to pay back the money but the court declined to grant his wish.

He, however, refunded GH¢4 million in November 2016 and promised to pay the outstanding balance by quarterly instalments of GH¢5 million, commencing April 1, 2017 but failed to do so.

Source: GNA

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