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The second accused person and former Director-General of the National Communications Authority (NCA), in the case of the Republic versus Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie and four others, William Mathew Tetteh-Tevie, has denied the charge of money laundering brought against him by State over the purchase of the Pegasus cybersecurity equipment for the National Security Council Secretariat which has landed him and others in court.
In his evidence in chief at the Commercial High Court today the 28th of January 2020, Mr. Tetteh-Tevie told the court that he did not benefit financially from the purchase of the controversial equipment.
Led in his evidence by Godwin Tamakloe, the former NCA boss stated that it has been established before the court by prosecution witnesses including the investigator of the case that “he never found any money in my bank account or he cannot establish any evidence that any of the accused persons gave me any funds.”
The accused person stated in support of his stands that “it cannot be true that I have laundered any money because I have not received any money to be laundered. In fact, Dr. Anin, the Director of Finance who is the signatory to the account of the NCA when asked in his evidence he said as a seasoned accountant he will never transfer any funds without being sure about the authenticity of the request”, Mr. Tevie said in court.
The former Director-General of the NCA also denied the charge of causing financial loss to the State. He indicated that “If you look at the evidence that has been presented in this court, the funds from the NCA have been transferred to the accounts of IDL (Infraloks Development Limited) for onward transfer to ISO and none of it landed in my account. And the inspector did his thorough investigation, he did not find that the funds landed in my account for which reason they will say I misapplied funds. The equipment was paid for that was why it was shipped. So I could not have misapplied public fund for my personal gain.”
Mr. Tevie also told the court that the decision to purchase the Pegasus equipment started way before he became the Director General of the NCA and was only given handing over notes on the transaction when he took office.
“I was briefed on a lot of these things. So it was a project in motion before I got to NCA.”
Mr. Tetteh-Tevie again told the court about how things that are not included in the NCA’s budget are purchased and ratification is later given by the Board of the NCA. The court presided over by Justice Eric Kyei Baffuor was also told by the witness how none of the accused persons during interrogation told officers that they had given him (Tevie) any money from the fund made available for the purchase of the equipment.
Mr. Tetteh-Tevie together with the former board chairman of the NCA, Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie and former Director-General of the NCA; Nana Owusu Ensaw; AlhajiSalifuMimina Osman, a former National Security Coordinator, as well as private businessman George Derek Oppong, Director of Infraloks Development Limited, are being tried for allegedly causing financial loss to the state in the purchase of the cyber-security equipment for the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) for counter-terrorism purposes. The five accused persons are facing 16 other charges, including conspiracy, stealing, using public office for profit, money laundering, among others and the amount complained of by the state is about $4 million.
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