Martin Amidu backs down on Woyome's GHC51.2m judgement debt

Former Attorney General, Martin A. Amidu has backed down on his legendary legal attempts at retrieving the GHC51.2 million wrongfully paid to embattled businessman Alfred Agbesi Woyome by the State. Mr Amidu who was seeking the permission of Ghana’s Supreme Court to orally examine Mr Woyome on the controversial amount, announced before the Court Wednesday he wants the case withdrawn in view of the commitment by the Akufo-Addo’s government to retrieve the amount. When the case was recalled Wednesday,  Mr Amidu told the court constituted by a single judge, Justice Anin Yeboah, that the new assurances from the new government, particularly the new Attorney General, Gloria Akuffo, influenced his decision to seek the withdrawal. READ: Supreme Court suspends oral examination of Woyome over GHC51.2m “He [Amidu is saying the new government and the AG have promised to retrieve all judgement debts so he wants to withdraw the case to see what comes out of it,” TV3’s Godred Tanam reported from the court. Mr Amidu is optimistic the new administration will take the necessary legal steps to retrieve all monies owed the state my Mr Woyome. READ: Martin Amidu’s examination of Woyome pushed to Jan 26 Both the State, represented by Chief State Attorney, Dorothy Afriyie and lawyers for Mr Woyome, did not oppose the prayer for the case to be withdrawn. The court consequently struck out the application as withdrawn. Background The Supreme Court constituted by a single judge, Justice Anin Yeboah, on November 16, 2016 granted permission to Amidu to orally examine Woyome on the controversial GHC51.2 million paid to him by the State. But the lawyers for Woyome later filed two separate motions one of which sought a reversal of the decision by Justice Anim because the court, which was constituted by a single judge, lacked jurisdiction to give the order of November 16, 2016 order. Mr Woyome obtained the amount on claims that he helped Ghana to raise funds for the construction of stadia the CAN 2008 Nations Cup hosted by Ghana. An Auditor General’s report released in 2010, however said the amount was paid illegally to the businessman. The former AG, who has earned the accolade citizen vigilante for his anti-corruption pursuit, suo moto [on his own] initiated a suit at the Supreme Court against Woyome, which eventually lead to the declaration of the payment as unconstitutional two years ago. The Court thus ordered the retrieval of GHC51.2 million from Mr Woyome but the businessman has paid only GHC 4 million to the State. Attorney General in an attempt to retrieve the money, filed an application to that sought to orally examine Mr Woyome in court but later retreated and withdrew the application with liberty to re-file. The AG’s decision compelled the Mr Amidu to file a similar application, which was granted by the Court on November 16, 2016 The Court fixed November 24, 2016 for the said examination. But barely 24 hours to the face-off in court, Woyome’s lawyers initiated a writ at the Supreme Court to challenge the legality of the court’s order of November 16, 2016.

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 By Stephen Kwabena Effah||Ghana ]]>