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Opinions Wed, 8 May 2013

Lawyer Amaliba’s comments on judgement debts are dishonest.

On Asempa Fm’s ‘Ekosii Sen’ programme on May Day, I listened to an interview the hostess Afua Pokuaa granted Lawyer Abraham Amaliba

concerning the apparent uncontrolled payments of judgement debts to undeserving PAYEES -- Lawyer Amaliba happens to be a member of the NDC legal team and even a member of the legal team defending NDC at the on-going Supreme Court election challenge. He must therefore be

deemed to be knowledgeable, deep-thinker and a crack--- My impression about him after listening to the interview is that he is dishonest and a villain.

The whole matter was triggered by the news item thus , quote— ‘’Commission on Judgment Debt has expressed disappointment at the Attorney General’s

Department for putting up a weak defence in a case relating to the payment of compensation on a land belonging to the Second Infantry Brigade in Kumasi.

Sole Commissioner Justice Yaw Apau said the Attorney General’s Department in the Ashanti Region failed to provide a strong defence on behalf of the state

and thus led the nation to pay a judgment debt to the tune of GH¢11,000,000.00 to the plaintiffs. --- According to Mr. Justice Apau, government

paid GH¢11,000,000.00 as compensation to Nana Kwaku Duah Appianin III and two others in a case against the Ministry of Defence and Attorney

General’s Department in 2009. The Commissioner said records available indicated that the Attorney General’s Department, which was supposed to defend the interest of the state, rather

strengthened the plaintiff’s case by asking the Lands Commission officer in Kumasi to evaluate the land for the plaintiff. --‘It is obvious that it was a fictitious and the money paid was shared, ‘he said’’-unquote.

The hostess linked the discussions to the infamous and dubious Woyome judgement debt payment and others arising from the non-performance of the

Attorney General’s office as even observed by the Sole Judgement Debt Commissioner and the fact that the former Attorney-General Mrs Betty Mould Iddridu

was a non-performer, sleeping on her job, negligent and should be indicted. In trying to react, Lawyer Abraham Amaliba started by resorting to diversions,

misleadings and red-herrings to confuse, bamboozle and unnecessarily diffuse the issues. Lawyer Amaliba’s contentions centered on the fact that those who caused the judgement debts are rather to be blamed citing for instance those public officials and politicians who vary or cancel legally binding public contracts

and thereby create the conditions for filing of judgement debts. Ameliba was virtually echoing the infamous words of Late President Mills, at the airport when

on his return from abroad in December 2011 and in response to reporters’ questions about the Woyome payments retorted that:- ‘those who create the judgement

debts are rather the culprits in the affair’.

I challenge lawyer Amaliba that he was not fair to Ghanaians on air that day and that he was intellectually dishonest, insensitive and villainous. He danced around

the facts that public officials at the Attorney General‘s office in Kumasi deliberately relaxed and put up a weak defence and a allowed a false claimant

Nana Kwaku Duah to just get away with a whopping GH¢11,000,000.00 compensation payment from scare public resources. There was no contract abrogated

in this case so what was Amaliba’s references to abrogated contracts about?

Even, in the Woyome case, there was no contract with stipulated conditions involved but GH¢51000000.00 sum was still freely paid out. So what was Amaliba

referring to in terms of contract abrogation?

Similarly, CP contractor, who on his own, abandoned his contract for construction of Assin Praso- Anwiankwata Road , Subi Junc –Akim Oda Road and other

roads rather turned round and told Betty Mould and NDC officials that the contract was terminated by Kufuor govt. CP never showed any letter of

termination. (Of course, there was no termination). Betty Mould, the Attorney General never checked with the Road Authorities about the nonexistent letter of termination. Betty Mould, Dr Duffuor and other NDC corrupt top dogs carelessly just went ahead and negotiated to pay €94m to CP for Loss of Profit---- for nothing,

for no work done—Awoof money. Again, what was Amaliba talking about in term of contract abrogation?

It’s amazing how Ghanaian public officials and politicians can exhibit such excessive misconduct of negligence and allow public funds – (about $1.5b in 2 years) - to be so wantonly dissipated in such a manner. And when we are brooding over our plight, then Lawyer Abraham Amaliba wants to be clever. He is dishonest.

He wants to play on our intelligence. He must respect the Ghanaian. He should come again to explain the peculiar attitude of the Attorney General’s office that deliberately looks away or puts up weak defence to false claims and thereby facilitate payments of huge undeserved judgment debts —all in this Mills/ Mahama era.

John Yawose
Columnist: Yawose, John