Former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Martin Alamisi Ben Kaizer Amidu, has sent signals to his detractors to the effect that he does not fear death.
Mr Amidu particularly mentioned the sacked National Security Coordinator, Lt Col Larry Gbevlo-Lartey (rtd), who he alleged threatened him for daring to continuously speak up on issues of corruption in the country.
‘I will not now be cowed and thugs can be sent to assassinate me should the government or anybody wish, for all I care!’ he said in another explosive statement released over the weekend in the wake of the much-talked-about Woyome judgement.
Mr Amidu said: ‘I am sending this rejoinder out at the weekend so that it does not, on a working day, detract from the real issues of the perception that the Government and the Attorney General were not bent on sincerely prosecuting Woyome and all his accomplices or retrieving the judgment debts ordered by the Supreme Court.’
He had indicted state officials as being in bed with Woyome for allowing such a gargantuan amount to be paid with no contract in place.
The former security chief reportedly took to Facebook, a social media platform last week, to lambast Mr Amidu – who has come to be regarded by many as a leading anti-corruption crusader – for making statements that were not ‘entirely factual’ in the GH¢51.2 million Woyome scandal.
Mr Amidu had claimed that he advised the Mills/Mahama administration to persuade his predecessor, Betty Mould-Iddrisu, who authorised the Woyome payment, to be used as a prosecution witness in the criminal case against Woyome, in lieu of prosecution, as stated in his recent press release.
‘I made a press statement about Ministers of State involved in gargantuan crimes. I also advised the President of my intention as the Attorney General to prosecute Woyome along with all his accomplices and to persuade the then Attorney General to be a witness or be prosecuted. I am then invited by a Member of the Council of State (incidentally Betty Mould-Iddrisu’s husband) at the behest of the President and told to withdraw my press statement accusing members of the Government and its card bearing members who use the NDC as an insurance against prosecutions for crime,’ he said.
‘The next day the President, true to his demand through Alhaji Iddrisu Mahama, purports to dismiss me with immediate effect. Am I, therefore, wrong to contend that I was removed from office to prevent me from prosecuting the offending NDC Ministers and party members that raped the nation?’ he asked rhetorically.
Mr Gbevlo-Lartey had on the other hand stated, ‘That is not a statement of fact for those who witnessed the episode that led to the firing of Martin.’
This might have angered Mr Amidu, affectionately called ‘Citizen Vigilante’, who fired back by asking Mr Gbevlo-Lartey to shut up because he (Gbevlo-Lartey) did not witness every episode that led to his removal from office as Attorney-General by President John Evans Atta Mills.
‘There are other things to be said about my latter relationship with Gbevlo-Lartey after I left office, should he persist in peddling untruths about me to which he has no personal knowledge,’ he warned.
‘He had used cajoling, promises, threats, and intimidations on me with the singular intention of shutting me up,’ he added.
The former AG described Mr Gbevlo-Lartey as someone who wants government’s favour by propagating lies after his sudden dismissal by Mahama.
‘Gbevlo-Lartey after his sudden and unexpected removal from office may be seeking to win favours with the Government by pretending to know everything that happened before I left office,’ he said.
‘I would want Gbevlo-Lartey and his type in the NDC to know for the avoidance of all doubts that on 4th September 2014, a High Court entered judgment in my favour, recognising that my alleged dismissal for misconduct was illegal and wrong as it was without due process of law.’
He noted that he would be letting the public down if he did not react to the security capo’s comment, saying, ‘Gbevlo-Lartey threw the first stone and no one can blame me! Suffice it to say that all rational people know that any assertions that Larry Gbevlo-Lartey knew everything that happened in the Mills/Mahama Government just because he was National Security Co-ordinator are irredeemable presumptuous lies.’
He said he had ministerial responsibility for security and intelligence as Minister of the Interior; and as Attorney General, he was principal legal advisor to the government and ‘would not convey legal advice to the President through a National Security Co-ordinator, a subordinate officer under the 1992 Constitution.’
Gbevlo & Woyome
According to Mr Amidu, Mr Gbevlo-Lartey had an open and public grudge against Alfred Agbesi Woyome over some party primaries involving the former’s son in the Volta Region, prior to the scam going public, adding that ‘as the Attorney General, I did not know even Woyome in person, let alone to have any personal grudge against him.
‘Should Gbevlo-Lartey not have recused himself from this whole Woyome investigations, the reports, and prosecution when he was in office because of the prior personal and public animosity between them on grounds of conflict of interest?’ he asked.
He recounted the incident of January 13, 2012 which led to his removal from office as AG and said Mr Gbevlo-Lartey was not there during the main discussion, adding that the security capo was feeding on hearsay.
He also confirmed that indeed on the eve of the Election Day in December 2012, Mr Gbevlo-Lartey had sent security operatives to ransack his residence without a court warrant, saying tensions were very high in the country and that could have caused mayhem if ‘I had invited the media and others to my residence that day.
‘I refused to be used by him as a scapegoat in causing any upheavals that might lead to confusion and God knows what, at the nick of the elections! Does Gbevlo-Lartey know whose votes would have been affected most if I had made his illegal search, arrest, and detention at the BNI public on that day even if the election still went ahead?’
He said he later got to know that the security coordinator did not even have the permission of the President to order the raid.
‘The President told my emissaries later that he was not informed, was not aware, let alone to instruct him on that critical day in the nation’s history: the President undertook to deal with the matter. I prevented whatever unconstitutional intentions, if any, Gbevlo-Lartey might have had to use me innocently for. I preserved the dignity of Ghana as a democracy!’
‘The intention to overwhelm me with personal attacks by agents of government and the NDC, some of whom may selfishly and greedily be seeking only to build their personal stomach infrastructure at the expense of the Republic, will not succeed because those who have ever worked with me know that I was a work horse for the governments I served and I still have the same energy to protect and defend the Constitution of Ghana as by law established even during my retirement.’
By William Yaw Owusu
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