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11.04.2007 General News

Coup at SFO

By The Heritage

Internal wrangling is ongoing within the boardroom of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) over whether the acting Executive Director, Mr Theophilus Cudjoe, should stay or otherwise.

The Heritage newspaper reports that the board members are divided over the proper official status of Mr Cudjoe. Board members have thrown out plans by the Board Chairman of the SFO, Justice N.Y.B Adade, to boot out Mr Cudjoe.
The paper reports that Mr Cudjoe has announced his desire to leave the seat but the other board members are not in favour.

The Heritage said after the massive defeat of Justice Adade, the remaining five board members dictated to the administrator, Adjiri Kwakye, to serve notice on the S.F.O's notice board that Mr. Cudjoe was to revert to his position as acting Executive Director, a position disputed by many in and outside the Office on the grounds that it had never been given to Mr Cudjoe.

According to The Heritage sources, Justice Adade knew nothing about a purported meeting on March 29 by the board members, which in course of time, he got wind of and went to stop. His strength, The Heritage gathered, was rooted in Parliamentary Act 466, the very Act that established the SFO Section 8(1) of that Act states: “The Board shall meet at such times and places as the Chairman shall determine.”

No other provision is made for any other person to convene an SFO meeting.

Inside sources add two other reasons Mr. Adade was infuriated by the meeting that he stormed only to be humiliated. Mr. Cudjoe was supposed to be on a l20-day accumulated leave and, even if granted that he was a proper member of the board, he could not have returned from leave to convene a meeting at the blind side of the board chairman.

The second related to the acceptability of Mr. Cudjoe as acting Executive Director in the first place. Opponents of Mr. Cudjoe aver that the man assumed that position unilaterally, a charge he refutes vehemently. Mr. Cudjoe joined the investigators in 1993 at the rank of deputy director in charge of investigations, a position he held till he resigned in 2000 under conditions yet to be clarified.

Mr. Cudjoe was called back to oc¬cupy same position when a demo¬cratic change of government brought in the New Patriotic Party in 2001. The following year, Mr Brian Anku Sapati, who had been acting as the executive director was recalled by his mother organization, the Internal Revenue Service. This then rendered that position vacant.

For 10 years now no substantive executive director has been appointed for the SFO.