Court grants three bail over forgery of COVID-19 vaccination cards

An Accra Circuit court has granted GH¢80,000.00 bail with three sureties to a Nation Builders Corp (NABCo) employee for dishonestly receiving and forging unauthorised COVID-19 vaccination cards allegedly at the Tema General Hospital.

It also granted GH¢50,000.00 bail with three sureties, one to be justified each, to two others for allegedly stealing COVID-19 vaccination cards.

Aaron Kofi Asante, the NABCO employee, pleaded not guilty for forgery of official document (forging COVID-19 vaccination cards by imputing unauthorised names) after acquiring the cards from the second and third accused persons.

Kenneth Kojo Konadu, a Senior Finance Officer and Afia Nsiah Sarfo, a nurse, also denied stealing 39 and four COVID-19 vaccine cards, respectively, belonging to the Ghana Health Service.

Asante was additionally charged for dishonestly receiving some stolen COVID-19 cards allegedly from Konadu and Afia.

They will make their next appearance on March 8, 2022.

Chief Inspector of Police Isaac Anquandah told the Court presided over by Mrs Ellen Offei Ayeh that Asante was a Nation Builders Corp person at the Tema General Hospital.

Konadu was a Senior Finance Officer at the Tema Metro Health Directorate whilst Afia was also a nurse at the Tema General Hospital.

The prosecution said in December 2021, the National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) gathered that some health officials within Tema Metropolis issued and sold COVID-19 vaccination cards to people who had not been vaccinated.

It said on December 13, 2021 intelligence led to the arrest of Asante whilst he was in the process of selling two of the vaccination cards with serial numbers COVID-19/04616934 and COVID 19/05695190 to witnesses in the case.

Chief Inspector Anquandah said when a search was conducted in his room, seven of the vaccination cards were found, saying that Asante mentioned Konadu and Afia as his source of supply.

The prosecution said Konadu, and Afia were later arrested where 34 of the COVID-19 vaccination cards were also retrieved from Konadu when a search was conducted in his room.

Investigations revealed that the accused persons – Konadu and Afia were members of the COVID-19 vaccination teams that were engaged by the Tema Metro Health Directorate for the vaccination exercise, the Court heard.

It was again established that whilst Konadu sold five of the cards to Asante at GH¢4,500.00, Afia sold four (4) of the cards to Asante at GH¢150.00, it said.

Chief Inspector Anquandah said investigations further indicated that Asante normally charged fees ranging between GH¢300.00 and GH¢800.00 in exchange for COVID-19 vaccination cards for individuals who needed the COVID-19 vaccination cards for travelling purposes but who did not want to be vaccinated.

Source: GNA

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