The Supreme Court has set October 15, 2018 to hear oral arguments from embattled businessman, Alfred Agbesi Woyome, UT Bank, the Attorney General and one Abena Akyea, on matters relating to some property belonging to the businessman.
The state in its quest to confiscate some property it has identified as belonging to Mr. Woyome was truncated by claims that some of those property are not his but rather belong to others.
In furtherance of that, the apex court has ordered defunct UT Bank and the said Abena Akyea to show proof that some of the property which the state says belongs to Mr. Woyome is actually theirs.
The property in question includes a quarry in the Volta Region and residential facilities at Trasacco and Tesano in Accra.
The two have up to August 31, 2018 to file evidence of ownership of the property. The Office of the Attorney General also has up to October 5, 2018 to file its evidence challenging the claims that those property actually belong to Mr. Woyome.
The state has identified some property it claims belongs to Mr. Woyome and is seeking an order from the apex court to sell them off to defray the GH?51.2 million he fraudulently received as judgement debt.
The state had initiated an oral examination of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) financier at the Supreme Court in a bid to identify where his property are located.
Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, appearing before the court prayed sole judge, Justice Alfred A. Benin to order Mr. Woyome to return to the witness box to continue the oral examination in a bid to determine the dispute over the ownership of his property.
However, his lawyer Petrina Defia, prayed the court to halt the proceedings pending the determination of cases involving Mr. Woyome and government at the African Court on Human and People’s Right in Arusha, Tanzania and other international courts.
Justice Benin dismissed that request, saying the African Court can only order the government and not the Supreme Court.
Lawyers for Abena Akyea led by Opoku Amponsah told the court that the property in question, actually belong to their client.
They said the property which was identified as belonging to Mr. Woyome was rented to the businessman for a period of time which has long elapsed.
Lawyers for the defunct bank also prayed the sole judge to address their claims to the property instead of dealing with the oral examination.
They claimed Mr. Woyome had taken a loan from them but had defaulted in making payment forcing them to focus on selling the quarry which had been used as collateral.
They added that the bank owes the Bank of Ghana and needs to sell off the quarry in order to make the payments.
Deputy AG, Mr. Dame was however, not impressed by the arguments put forward by Abena Akyea that they owned the property and had only rented it to Mr. Woyome for a period of time which had long elapsed.
He accused the two of some form of collusion to prevent the state from retrieving the debt from Mr. Woyome.
Justice Benin after listening to the lawyer and the Deputy AG, held that it is important to deal with claims concerning the ownership of the property rather than focusing on the oral examination.
He said the oral examination will not achieve anything if it proceeds and it later turns out that the property does not belong to Mr. Woyome.