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11.05.2009 NDC News

NDC strikes back:after sakawa rip-off story

By The Statesman
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The National Democratic Congress has been compelled, in the light of the Sakawa scandal in which three Nima teenagers were ripped off to the tune of GH¢5700.00 (Fifty seven million old Ghana cedis) by boys working at its offices, to review its security apparatus at the NDC Headquarters - with the immediate axing of Adom, the security personnel in the centre of the scandal.

The NDC has also demanded that Adom, the security guard on duty at the time of the incident who caused the office staff to chase the two teenagers, produce other security personnel mentioned in the case in which Nima Police was wrongfully cited within five hours or face the music.

When The Statesman last called, one of the soldiers had been nabbed and was being investigated for his involvement in the case. Besides, the NDC, we were told, were making efforts to reach out to the suspects and get to the bottom of the matter – "before appeasing the gangs and the victims, who all constitute a major NDC political constituency.”

According to The Statesman's sources, the former arrangement in which retired or retrenched soldiers with NDC background were recruited to provide security services at the Head Offices in line with the 'Jobs for the Boys' principle will be bent, so the security personnel signed on henceforth are obligated to act professionally, without dragging the name of the NDC into the

In its place, immediately, the party is putting in place a fresh arrangement that will ensure that only personnel from private security companies will be recruited for the jobs.

The decision followed a crisis meeting held at the party's headquarters the morning after The Statesman broke the story on the Sakawa loot and the embarrassing twist in which NDC boys at the National Head Office, confiscated monies they suspected were Sakawa from two Nima boys and girl and disposed of the case, after they had created the impression that the case was being handed to the Nima Police for investigation, when that truly was not the case.

The rip-off drew the anger of youth gangs from Nima, who threatened that they would return fire with fire any day. It took the intervention of a Moslem cleric and a couple of Alhajias to get the gangs to leave the NDC Headquarters, without sparks flying.

The incident occurred last Sunday May 3, 2009 in the full glare of the public and residents near Paloma and the NDC Headquarters, in which one of the suspects was nearly killed while crossing the main street.

According to the source and eye witnesses close to the NDC HQs, two soldiers last Sunday chased three youngsters from the Ring Road Central Western Union office, near the Bus Stop Restaurant, across the streets in front of Paloma Restaurant.

With the assistance of some passers-by, two of the suspects, a young boy aged 18 was arrested. Minutes later, one of the soldiers arrived with a young girl who was alleged to have assisted the young man in a Sakawa operation.

Naturally, the scene drew the attention of the neighborhood and passers-by. However, on realizing the crowd that was forming, the security man at the NDC HQs, identified only as Adom, an ex-serviceman, suggested that they entered the NDC office premises to resolve the matter.After the boys had been forced into the NDC Headquarters, the gate was locked from inside to ward off intruders.

According to our sources, the two suspects were subjected to series of interrogations amidst 'talk-true' slaps. Eventually, they confirmed that a foreigner had sent them some money from overseas and that was what they went to withdraw.

When they were searched, an amount of GH¢ 3, 700 and GH¢700 were found on the boy and

The girl confirmed to the NDC inquisitors that the young man did not show his       intentions until that fateful day when he asked her to accompany her to withdraw some money which a friend of his had sent to him through the Western Union Money Transfer system.

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