How Bribery Plot Was Foiled
An orchestrated bribery plot to manipulate constituency elections of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Biakoye Constituency, fell on the rocks when national executives of the party were alerted. At the centre of the botched bribery plot were Mr. Dan Korsina, who was aspiring to be elected as constituency chairman and Mr. Samuel Doh, the Constituency Organizer, who managed to retain his position at an election held over the weekend in the constituency.
In a conversation between the two, picked up by The Chronicle, they discussed how the plan to change names of some delegates on the constituency's register of delegates ahead of the polls was to be facilitated. The main targets in the plot, who were to receive packages in order to facilitate the move to manipulate the elections, as captured in the conversation between the two, were Mr. Peter Mac Manu, National Chairman of the NPP and the then constituency chairman of the party, Mr. Abotsina.
The plot was aborted after a contestant for the chairmanship position, Anane Agyei Forson, who eventually emerged as the chairman in last week's elections, alerted the National Chairman about the plot, through a petition dated January 26, 2007 a copy of which has been sighted by The Chronicle. If the plot had gone through, Mr. Mac Manu was to be offered an unspecified package, the constituency Chairman was to be given some ¢10million, while those who would have fallen victim to the change of names, could have gone away with some mobile phones.
In the election itself, Mr. Forson emerged as Chairman, Kwaku Acquah as Vice Chairman, Dan Amoah Marfo as Secretary, Samuel Doh retained his position as Organiser, Sarfoa Marfo as Women's Organiser, Nana Adu Francis, Treasurer, Maxwell Tawiah as Youth Organiser and Komla Onny as first Vice Chairman. Below is the translated version of the conversation that was in Ewe between Mr. Doh, Constituency Organiser of the party and Mr. Korsinah, who contested for the position of Chairman and lost: Doh: I have just arrived. You asked me to solicit chairman's help in order to replace some names in the list. I have seen him. He was initially not happy about the proposal but he later accepted to be of help.
Korsina: Thank you Doh: He anticipated a little problem though. You know, he personally went round to supervise most of the polling station elections especially in the Worawora area. There is therefore the possibility of hell breaking loose if he replaces those names with people who openly worked for the independent candidate.
Korsina: You see, we are trying to work towards reconciliation. My side is also not asking for all names in the list to be replaced.
For instance, 2 out of the 4 names in Worawora could be replaced for the sake of reconciliation. The chairman said no, you rather told me that Peter Amana pleaded for forgiveness, if you have really forgiven him, then (he should be forgiven so) his name should not be changed.
Secondly, though Ofori openly supported the independent candidate, he did not sign any documents for him (Independent candidate). For the sake of reconciliation, he should also be pardoned.
We can use such simple means to convince everybody. For those who will lose their positions as a result, I'll give you a package to be presented to each of them with the explanation that though they were faithful throughout the difficult period till now, they were gallantly giving way to others so that the party can be reconciled and the packages were a token of appreciation or compensation. Mobile phones or so could be used for the package and they will surely be happy about them. These little things will help us to move on. Doh: Anyway, Chairman has agreed to go along. He was only scared or uncertain about what may happen in the future.
Korsina: Okay. Thank you. Doh: Have you been able to present the National Chairman with the package you decided to give him? Korsina: I've decided to wait until he returns from Fomena before I do so but I wish that, on that fateful day, you (plural) will also be present but pretend to be ignorant about what is going on. For instance, your group could pay him a visit on that day and just as you are about to leave his office, I will also come in to see him for the presentation. I will then inform him that I met you people around. I can even arrange for Jiga to be present. Doh: Do you mean Jiga can accompany you to the chairman? Korsina: Jiga is the one who introduced me to the chairman. He did not know me in connection with anything at the time. Dogbe was the only one who knew about it.
One day, Jiga asked me to accompany him to greet the chairman. It was then that I was properly introduced to him. Doh: All that chairman requires from you now is to do your best to send the National chairman some money so that you could have close contact with him all the time. We want to avoid the situation where he will expose us and drive us away disgraced when we present him with the tampered list. Korsina: Are you scared about that? Doh: Yes, because if we send the list with the changes and it does not tally with what they have, he may become very angry, sir. Korsina: You see, there is no list at the National Secretariat from Biakoye. We have only been insisting that the list you (plural) prepared for the election was not right.
Doh: Are you telling me that we can just smuggle those names into the list and safely hand them over to you to be taken to the National Chairman? Korsina: That is so. What will work to our advantage is the fact that Akatsi was not included in your list but it will be included; what I have proposed will ensure that the entire constituency is covered. Nobody wrote any letter to the headquarters about the exclusion of Akatsi from the list but I mentioned it to the National Chairman, who reacted that if found to be true, elections will be conducted there. This can be said to be a revised or compromised list.
Doh: I agree with you on that issue. The last issue is how much you decide to give to Mr. Abotsina. He was trying to find out from me. Korsina: I have not given him any money yet. Doh: How much do you think you can give him? Korsina: How much do think I should give him? Doh: You have to name a figure which I will present to him and probably convince him to take it. Korsina: Erm, is 10 good enough? Doh: ¢ 10 million? Korsina: Ehh, I think eh, well. Doh: You suggest something. Korsina: Since we are seeking for peace, what do you say? Doh: I can speak and fight for myself but I cannot do so on behalf of someone else, so how much do you feel you can give him? I'll convince him to take it. Korsina: Don't talk like that, he is currently in the driving seat, though you will help him to be a good driver. Doh: How much do you feel you can give him? Korsina: Is 10 not sufficient?
Doh: Ah well, if that is your decision, what about me, how much will you give me? Korsina: My brother, don't talk like that; everything is between you and I so far, we are trying to work together for peace. How will I feel if after winning, I have nobody to work with? It is not the best. Do you understand? Doh: You can increase Mr. Abotsina's amount and forget about mine since I'm not all that serious about mine. In any case, we shall be working together. Korsina: You come to my place and let's talk about yours. Doh: I will return today so just increase it small for Mr. Abotsina. I'll personally bring him along. I want to bring him down here. Korsina: I am more concerned about peace and understanding. Having worked for us as a constituency chairman, we can show him our gratitude in a big way. It is not a big deal. We can do that for him. You know, some big people asked me about what we are planning to do for him.
He is my chairman so I can choose to do something big for him. I have to look after him well as a former chairman too, so that we can co-exist peacefully. Doh: I want to be certain about something. My people may get to know about what I have done. Do you have enough support from Tommy or Kenwuud so that even if they do, we can have full confidence in you? Korsina: As far as Ken is concerned, there is nothing I will ask him and he will refuse. The most important thing to him is that the result should be in my favour. That is all there is to it and in this case I think it is to my benefit. All I need is unity so that I can win comfortably, not with slim majority of about 5 or 6 votes. We need to work in a manner that will give me a large vote difference.
Doh: Have you called Solo of late? Korsina: Solo? No, but he called me Doh: Did you outline the plan to him? Did he agree? Korsina: I gave him the points you raised. That the Abutiaman came to plead for forgiveness, that Philipo also signed something, likewise Sanko. Once you tell me something, I'm bound to let them know about it so they can know what you are doing for them. I told him how Peter Ocquaye is a very difficult person. Doh: If I'm unable to reach you today, I'll see you tomorrow, because chairman has also sent me with an envelope. It concerns the E.P. Church. That is why I want us to reach a consensus so that I quickly go to see him so that we can cook the whole thing in spite of the others. Once you have done enough groundwork. What about the Presidential candidate?
COUNCIL PREFERS SPOTLESS CANDIDATE Korsina: Let's leave that for now, what I hear is that the National Council will prefer someone without a spot for the NDC to capitalize on. I understand an independent person is investigating their backgrounds. Things will become clearer by March or April. Doh: Try to do according to your promises; National chairman and all. Korsina: You don't know me. I'll do exactly as I say.
Although the contents of the tape suggest the two were accomplices, Chronicle intelligence gathered that the Constituency Organiser had feigned interest in the plot.
When Mr. Korsina was contacted yesterday, he said he was the view that once the elections were over, there was no need to talk about things that happened prior to the elections. He said he wanted to live peacefully his 'small corner and wanted to be spared having his name in the newspaper.