Assibit’s Counsel Discredits Witness’s Testimony

Counsel for Philip Akpeena Assibit, Mr Raymond Bagnabu, last Wednesday told the Financial Division of the High Court in Accra that all the testimonies by Alhaji Nuru Hamidan in court that Goodwill International Consultancy (GIC) did not have a contract with the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Development Agency (GYEEDA) were false.

The court is hearing the case involving the former co-ordinator of GYEEDA, Mr Abuga Pele.

Consequently, he tendered in court documents purported to be a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the GYEEDA and the GIC to suggest that there had really been an agreement between the two parties.

Mr Bagnabu made the court to know that all the negative things that Alhaji Hamidan had said about Assibit were absolutely false.

Mr Hamidan, in response, maintained his earlier assertion to the court and added that he had sworn by the Quran and would not lie to the court.

He said all he told the court was nothing but the truth.

Counsel for Abuga Pele, Mr Karl Adongo, took his turn to ask the prosecution witness whether or not he knew Pele.

The witness told the court that he knew Pele very well.

He said he (Hamidan) was the deputy co-ordinator in charge of operations at the GYEEDA and later given additional responsibility for administration.

Alhaji Hamidan noted that he had a good interpersonal relationship with Pele and did not have anything negative against him in court.

Mr Adongo then rested his case and the presiding judge, Mrs Afia S. Asare-Botwe, discharged the witness and adjourned sitting to March 20, 2014.

Prosecution witness

Earlier, the prosecution witness had insisted that Assibit had failed to raise $65 million from the World Bank to create jobs for one million youth in the country.

Alhaji Hamidan said an assertion by the lawyer for Assibit that some former ministers of state had publicly announced the receipt of the $65 million was of no effect because the money never came.

Charges

Assibit and Pele have been accused of committing acts that have led to the loss of GH¢4.1 million to the state.

Pele is alleged to have entered into a contract with Assibit to engage in activities which have negatively affected ­­­­­­the finances of the state.

The former Co-ordinator of the GYEEDA has pleaded not guilty to two counts of abetment of crime and intentionally misapplying public property and five counts of wilfully causing financial loss to the state.

Assibit, on the other hand, has pleaded not guilty to six counts of defrauding by false pretences and five counts of dishonestly causing loss to public property.

Cross-examination continues

During cross-examination, Mr Bagnabu sought to cow the witness into accepting that the government had, indeed, received the $65 million based on media reports.

He quoted former sector ministers who had announced the receipt of the amount, but Alhaji Hamidan stated that he was once a d­­­­eputy National Co-ordinator of the GYEEDA and, therefore, knew the structures of its programmes.

He said media reports could not be relied on and also denied assertions from counsel that his (Hamidan’s) evidence was an afterthought.

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