General News of Friday, 25 May 2018
Fourteen residents of the Ablekuma North Constituency in the Greater Accra Region have petitioned against moves to Mr John Ortsin Nii Ashraku as the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Ablekuma North Municipal Assembly.
In the petition, copied to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) and signed by John Agbotey, Stephen Asare, Awurabena Awukubea Ofosu, George Opoku Sika and 10 others, posited that Mr Ashraku who is the Chairman of the Odorkor-Kaneshie-Graphic Road-Salaga Branch of the GPRTU lacked the credibility to be nominated as MCE by the President.
According to them, Mr Ashraku allegedly had always been known as Samuel Quaye but in 2013 when the polling station register for Ablekuma North of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) was compiled he appeared in it as John Kwesi Ortsin.
In applying for the position of MCE, they alleged, he used the name Nii Ashraku John Ortsin and wondered what he sought to hide by adopting different names at different times.
Defending their opposition further, the petitioners contended that a judgement by an Accra High Court on February 14, 2018 presided over by His Lordship Justice E.K. Mensah which has been sighted by the GNA, indicted Mr. Ashraku for financial malfeasance in a case brought against him and four others by one Isaac Mensah, a union member of the GPRTU of TUC.
According to the judgement as contained in the petition, the court awarded GHC10, 000.00 cost against Mr. Ashraku and his co-defendants, and were further ordered to account for monies collected on behalf of the union for the past 18 years which they had not accounted for.
It was the view of the petitioners that if a High Court had found the MCE aspirant guilty of failing to account for monies collected on behalf of a union he had presided over for the past 18 years, then the municipal assembly could not be entrusted into his hands.
The sources of revenue for municipal assembly, they stressed, included property rates, market tolls, fees from businesses, parking tolls and many others and if Mr. Ashraku could not account for tolls from just one source, the petitioners wondered how he would be trusted to account for revenue from so many sources.
They therefore appealed to the President to nominate somebody who was credible and could be trusted to steer the affairs of Ablekuma North Municipal Assembly and not Mr. Ashraku.
Reacting to the allegations levelled against him by his accusers when contacted by the GNA, Mr. Ashraku said he was born and named Samuel Nii Ashraku Quaye, but changed his name to John Ortsin in 2011.
Giving a copy of a Statutory Declaration of a change of name to the GNA dated July 22, 2016, the MCE aspirant said he finally decided to adopt the name John Nii Ashraku Ortsin for all his transactions from that date.
Mr. Ashraku confirmed that indeed there was court ruling against him and four others in some allegations levelled by one Isaac Mensah, he disagreed with the court and therefore instructed their lawyer to file a “Motion on Notice For Stay of Execution Pending An Appeal” at the High Court which was duly done on March 12, 2018 a copy which was made available to the GNA.