Justice Yaw Apau
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) appears not to be aware of $2.6million compensation payment to the Carmichael Family in respect of the Aveyime Livestock project in the Volta Region.
Seth Mensah Dumoga, Head of Legal at the ministry yesterday told the Commission of Enquiry Investigating the payment of judgement debts that he had not heard about the Carmichael Family or Christopher Michel who were said to have been paid the amounts.
He admitted that the government acquired the cattle ranch through an Executive Instrument and evidence before the commission indicated that a whopping $2.4million and additional $240,000 were paid to the claimants for the acquisition.
Kwadwo Awua-Peasah, the director in charge of External Resource Mobilization (Bilateral) at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning had already confirmed the payment and said it was done in two tranches totalling about GH¢2.6million.
Mr. Awua-Peasah had said it was eminent jurist Justice V.C.R.A.C. Crabbe who wrote a letter on the instructions of the President on January 6, 2009, to release the money to the Carmichael Family.
He said documents available indicated that the first payment of GH¢3.2million was authorised on April 28, 2009, while another amount of GH¢530,628.44 was released as the final batch of payment on May 27, 2009.
The witness had further told Sole Commissioner Justice Yaw Apau of the Court of Appeal that the $240,000 was paid as solicitor fees.
When Mr. Dumaoga appeared before the commission, he said land owners have started inundating the Ministry of Agriculture with notices for compensation for the land used for the Aveyime Cattle Ranch following news that the Carmichael Family was paid.
He said the workers at the ranch had not been paid for over two years adding, ‘About 200 cows and bulls are there now but the ranch has run down and we are in the process of dissolving it.’
He said the Aveyime Livestock Project is a limited liability company but the government owned 100 percent shares and added that the ministry was putting together all documents to assist the commission to unravel the mystery surrounding the payment.
Mr. Dumoga also cleared the air on the payment of GH¢340,000 to claimants who the commission said evidence available indicated were ‘unkown persons.’
He submitted a case file to the commission and said E.I. 24 covered the acquisition of 395.71 of July 26, 1995 from the Kokutse, Tettey and Abla families for an irrigation project in the Akuse area.
Earlier, Mr. Awua-Peasah also testified in the case involving the payment of about ¢14billion to Togbe Sakplikpa III following the acquisition of lands for the Accra Plains Agricultural Development in 1977.
Chief Valuer Kwesi K. Bentsi-Enchil also testified in the matter and confirmed that the Land Valuation Division compiled an evaluation report of the land.
Stella Badu, a Chief State Attorney representing the Attorney General also testified in the Togbe Sakplikpa’s case and said the AG had agreed with the claimants to recommend the payment by November 2002 but when the payment delayed the claimants sued.
‘The court gave judgement on admission,’ she said and added that the claimants were paid and there was no indication the claimants made subsequent complaints about delays in the payment.
By William Yaw Owusu
This article has 0 comment, leave your comment.