UK committee of inquiry indicts NPP-UK Chair, Secretary
The NPP-UK Branch Executive Committee has released the full report of the Inquiry Committee constituted to investigate a formal petition/complaint submitted to it by the Branch Chairperson of Council Of Elders, Mrs Comfort Arthur, alleging of some serious misapplication and possible stealing of part of some $20,000 donated to organise a befitting funeral rites in London for the late Chairman of the NPP-UK Branch Council of Elders, Mr Michael Boye-Anawomah.
Upon receipt of the Inquiry Committee's Report, the Branch Executive Committee has called for a general membership emergency meeting today, 3rd October, to discuss the embarrassing findings in the report and possible sanctioning of the Branch Chairman and Secretary as advised by the Inquiry Committee.
The preamble of the report says, "Following the demise of our late elder, Mr Boye-Anawomah, who was the Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) United Kingdom Branch Council of Elders (CoE) until his death on 28th of June 2018, the President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was duly informed at his Presidential office at Jubilee House by the Vice Chairperson of the Branch Council of Elders, Mrs Arthur.
Mr Boye-Anawomah who died at the age of 83 years had served as executive Secretary to the former Ghanaian Prime Minister Prof. Kofi Abrefa Busia and is well known to the current NPP elected
President of Ghana Nana Akufo-Addo
His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo personally donated $20,000 through the Vice Chairperson of the United Kingdom Council of Elders Mrs Arthur to help the family organise a befitting funeral for the late Elder. This, according to Mrs Arthur who was given the $20,000 to bring to UK, has found good reasons to suspect a deplorable way the money has been handled by some UK Executives, particularly the Branch Secretary, Dr DaCosta Aboagye.
Mrs Arthur, who is the current Chairperson of the UK Branch Council of Elders, went further to issue a formal statement to explain her concerns and subsequently requested for a formal inquiry into the matter. For this reason, the Branch Executive Committee on 28 August 2018, formed this adhoc Inquiry/Disciplinary Committee to investigate the complaint by Mrs Arthur.
The Inquiry Committee investigations into the matter has revealed damning evidence of how the Branch Secretary, Dr Dacosta Abosgye and the Chairman, Mr Kwaku Nkansah planned to steal the money and how they plotted to conceal their tracks.
One Mr Yaw Brobbey's oral evidence before the Committee and in the presence of Branch Secretary Dr DaCosta Aboagye, Mr Yaw Brobbey stated: “Mrs Athur asked for the accounts but Da-Costa asked me to tell Mrs Arthur to calm down. Da-Costa agreed to do the accounts. He said I should not speak to anyone. He sent me the accounts and said I should say I did the accounts. He said if I say I did the accounts this will calm people down. I declined”. When the Committee asked if he thought the entries on the accounts were accurate Yaw Brobbey stated: “Dacosta had put £350, £350 twice for video man but I told him that is not correct. He said he will correct it. I could not query any other entry because I did not know the figures."
On the other hand, the evidence by the Branch 2nd Vice Chairman was also more revealing. The report says, the Committee heard from the second vice Chairman, Mr Kingsley Adumata Agyapong also known as “Wofa K” who confirmed that Secretary, Dr DaCosta had confided in him that Branch Chairman Kwaku Nkansah instructed him to hand over the cash to Otuo (member of the UK Branch).
In his oral evidence, Wofa K stated: “I phoned DaCosta and told him that he lied to the Executives. I was really upset with him. When I got angry he (Dr Dacosta) laughed at me. He told me he was willing to confide in me and tell me the truth. He told me he took the money. I got quiet on the phone and he said Wofa are you there? I said yes and he said he left the $10,000 in his car boot because he did not want to take it home as his wife might see it. He said when he was going to Ghana he informed Chairman (Nkansah) and Chairman instructed him to hand over the cash to Otuo (right-hand man of the Chairman). I asked him (Dacosta) so after issuing all the statements on the platforms that you did not receive any money and causing us to call for an emergency meeting, you are now telling me the truth? I told him to call the First Vice Chairman and tell him the same."
The Committee found that the Branch Chairman, Kwaku Nkansah was giving instructions to Dr DaCosta as to what use to put the money and was involved in every stage of the scandal from collecting the money from Mrs Arthur and putting it into Otuo’s custody. According to the report, this point is further buttressed by the fact that Secretary Dr DaCosta Aboagye and Kwaku Nkansah went to Mrs Arthurs house to collect the money from Mrs Arthur and he Kwaku Nkansah instructed DaCosta to hand over £6000 to Otuo. The report says, DaCosta Aboagye testified that he counted the money in the presence of Mrs Arthur, and Kwaku Nkansah. It says, this is consistent with Yaw Brobbey and Mrs Arthur’s evidence that Kwaku Nkansah was present when Da-Costa collected the money.
The Committee finds that Chairman Kwaku Nkansah’s claim that money was not counted or collected in his presence is not credible. The Committee investigation finds that, the Branch Secretary, Dr DaCosta Aboagye created a first fictitious accounts. He sent it to one Mr Yaw Brobbey and caused it to be published on the official platforms and other social media through another man Mr Owusu Akyaw. Dacosta had intended it to be accepted as the accurate expenditure on the funeral. That the entries on the fictitious accounts were false and he did not believe the entries to be true or accurate.
According to the Committee Report, the Branch Secretary had done that to cover up his scheme to keep substantial part of the money he was hiding in one Mr Otuo’s accounts. "The Committee finds that Dr Da-Costa Aboagye showed a clear intention to keep the £6000 for himself but only handed it over to the widow when he came under intense public (Branch members) pressure accusing him of theft. Dacosta issued official statements denying having the said money in his possession, created and published or caused to be published a false statement of accounts to show that he had spent all the money on the funeral when in fact he was keeping £6000 in Otuo Acheampong’s accounts."
In conclusion, the Committee Report states that, "Finally, in view of all the findings we have made and our assessment of DaCosta’s general demeanour, the Committee finds that Dr DaCosta Aboagye’s fitness to lead effectively as a secretary of the branch is currently impaired and needs a lengthy period for remediation or may not be remediable at all within the foreseeable future due to his apparent lack of insight into the gravity of his actions."
The Inquiry Committee also finds it concerned for the Branch Chairman to state in his statement that, "he couldn't careless because the money was not Branch Money. In view of that, the Committee believes the Chairman Kwaku Nkansah failed to carry out his duties the Branch Chairman faithfully, diligently and competently to the best of his ability.
Under the Advisory Opinion of the Inquiry Committee, it states that, the Committee recognises that the terms of reference by the Branch Executive Committee for this inquiry implicitly requires it not to make recommendations. The Committee refrains from making recommendations and abide by the terms of reference. However, the Committee appreciates that a key member of the Branch Executive Committee Dr Da Costa Aboagye (the Branch Secretary) being the principal subject of this inquiry, with the Branch Chairman Kwaku Nkansah sufficiently implicated in this saga and still at post (though Dr Dacosta has already stepped aside), "the Committee finds it appropriately in the interests of justice and fairness to express its opinion, as members of the Branch, on what will be adequate sanction to redeem and safeguard the integrity and reputation of the Branch.
The Committee is mindful that with the chairman being at post and being sufficiently implicated in this Dr Dacosta Aboagye’s scandal, the ability of the Branch Executive Committee to issue appropriate sanction commensurate with the gravity of the findings will be seriously conflicted or compromised." Therefore, "It is the Committee’s advisory opinion that:" i. It is in the best interests of the Branch party in an effort to redeem and safeguard its somewhat damaged image, and in Dr DaCosta Aboagye’s own interests to resign from his post as a secretary of the Branch since continuing to front and represent the branch despite the findings we have made in this report will cause further damage to the reputation of the UK Branch.
ii. Given the gravity of this issue and weight of evidence against the Branch Chairman, it would be in the best interest of the Branch party and for fairness, for the Branch Chairman to step aside whiles the Branch Executive Committee makes the final recommendation based on the findings of this Inquiry Committee.
iii. Failure to achieve the above propositions (i & ii), the Committee advises that the Branch Scretary, Dr Dacosta Aboakye, should be suspended from his position for the remainder of his term for bringing this Branch and the party into disrepute and failing to carry out his duties faithfully and with honesty to the best of his ability in accordance with Article 3(D) (i & v) of the NPP Constitution 2017.
iv. The Branch Chairman, Mr Kwaku Nkansah, should be suspended from his position for the remainder of his term for not carrying out his duties as Chairman faithfully and diligently to the best of his ability. The Chairman has been uncooperative with the Inquiry Committee, has behaved dishonourably, irresponsibly, and incompetently and brought his position as a leader of the party in the United Kingdom into disrepute by failing or refusing to supervise Dr DaCosta Aboagye’s disbursements of the money and stating in his written narrative that he “couldn’t care less because it wasn’t branch money”. This is tantamount to being complicit in, or deliberately turning a blind eye to, Dr DaCosta Aboagye’s wrongdoing. The Chairman bears the biggest responsibility for this reason."