The Supreme Court has ordered Waterville Holdings Ltd. to return to the state €40 million it obtained illegally arising out of claims it brought against the state in 2009.
The Court’s order followed arguments before it by former Attorney General Martin Amidu that neither Waterville nor businessman Alfred Agbesie Woyome, who also obtained similar payments, had a valid contract with the state to warrant the payments.
The nine judges in a unanimous decision ruled that the monies paid Waterville in the judgement debt scandal were illegal and must be refunded.
Amidu who described himself as a citizen vigilante went to court seeking reliefs for monies paid illegally to both Woyome and Waterville to be declared illegally paid and an order for same to be returned to the state.
The judges granted six of the 15 reliefs sought by the former AG and only stayed a verdict on parts of the reliefs concerning Mr Woyome because those were the subject of another matter yet to be determined at the High Court.
The judges praised Martin Amidu for his relentless efforts in retrieving monies paid illegally to companies by the state.
In pursuit of the same matter, Amidu was sacked by the late president John Mills for alleged misconduct.
Not perturbed by the dismissal, Martin Amidu in series of epistles sought to direct his successor on how to retrieve the monies paid illegally to the state.
It appeared to him, that too was not going to be successful and therefore proceeded to file a suit in his capacity as an individual against Woyome and Waterville.
Part of the reliefs he sought included: a declaration that the second defendant (Waterville) in making their claims against the Government had no legitimate contract because the agreement had not been approved by Parliament and was inconsistent with the law.
He also held that the court should also make a declaration that Woyome together with Austro Invest Management in making their claims against the Government had no legitimate contract.
The court, in part, sustained the argument by the petitioner and on “jurisdictional grounds” stayed a verdict on the issue to do with the payment to Woyome because that was before the High Court.
The judges also referred the counsel for the defendants to the General Legal Council for punitive action to be taken against them.
They held that the lawyers, in supporting the defendants, sacrificed the ethics of the profession for financial rewards because they know too well that the defendants did not have the requisite contracts to make any such claims against the state.