Accra, May 21, GNA – The trial of Nana Azumbe, aka Motia father, a self-styled spiritualist alleged to be behind the famous Sakawa syndicate and five others continued at an Accra Circuit Court on Thursday.
Azumbe, his father Samuel Akanboe Adongo, and his assistants, Alex Konadu, Malik Jabel, Kwame Adu-Twum, Ernest Darko and Tony Adu-Gyamfi, now at large, are charged with defrauding an Accra-based contractor of GH¢9,000 under the pretext of multiplying the amount to GH¢5 billion through the supernatural powers of dwarfs, but failed to do so.
They also failed to return the complainant's money to him.
They pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and fraud and are on bail in the sum of GH¢20,000 bail each with two sureties to be justified.
The presiding judge Mr. D.E.K. Daketsey ordered them to report twice a week to the police.
Mounting the witness box, Mr Ofori Addo, the contractor narrated how the accused persons demanded two bottles of whisky, eight yards of calico, a guinea fowl, 32 strands of dwarfs hair to perform rituals and further demanded GH¢9,000 cedis in exchange of GH¢5 billion cedis.
Led in evidence by Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) E.Y. Frimpong, Mr Addo said on March 11 he was in his shop when he heard an advert on Asempa FM, an Accra based radio station, that Azumbe was assisting people to acquire wealth and promote health, among others.
Mr Addo, the first prosecution witness, said he proceed to Azumbe's house at Weija barrier, near Aplaku, in Accra.
On his arrival he (Mr Addo) met all the accused persons, excluding Samuel A. Adongo, who assured him that Azumbe's place was the “last stop to his problems”.
Witness said Jabel led him into a room where he was asked to put off his mobile phone.
According to the witness, one Tony, now at large, acted as the linguist for Azumbe.
Witness said Azumbe assured him of his assistance and asked him to pay GH¢52 cedis as consultation fee.
Mr Addo said Azumbe thereafter charged him GH¢9,000.
“I instantly paid GH¢940 for items needed for the rituals. Some of the items included 32 strands of dwarf's hair, eight yards of calico, two bottles of whisky and a guinea fowl.”
Mr Addo said Azumbe told him that in exchange of the GH¢9,000 cedis, he would offer him GH¢5 billion cedis.
“I was happy,” witness said.
Mr Addo said Azumbe asked him to go home and return the following day at 1400 hours so that he could continue with the rituals.
The following day, witness said, he complied but met Azumbe in front of Asempa FM.
“I waited until it was 10:00pm when Azumbe picked me and my friend up and sent us to Kpone in Accra.
“At Kpone, I was ushered into a single dark room with a candle light.”
Mr Addo said the room was divided with a white calico with a bottle of whisky, an empty bowl and a bottle of talcum powder.
As soon as Azumbe asked me to fetch some sand outside, I heard a voice screaming behind saying I should cover the bowl with a white calico.
Witness said Azumbe then asked him to unveil the bowl which contained his money.
Mr Addo said he did but found out that the bowl was empty.
On realizing the bowl was empty, witness said Azumbe asked him to provide another GH¢3,280 cedis but he did he did not have any money on him so they left the place.
On their way, witness said Azumbe asked him not to look back but he defied him and looked back and saw Tony.
Although witness said he suspected foul play he paid the amount of GH¢3,280 to Azumbe who further gave him and his friend a deadline to complete payment.
“Because I could not get the money, I offered my friend's plot of land as well as documents covering the land to Azumbe,” witness told the court.
Witness said: “Azumbe after inspecting the plot and documents, failed to give us the GH¢5 billion so we reported the matter to Police.”
DSP Frimpong told the court that in April the complainant heard on a local FM radio that Azumbe could help people to become rich within a short time.
On hearing this, the complainant traced the accused person's residence at Aplaku where they assured him of financial breakthrough.
The prosecution said Azumbe and Adu-Gyamfi demanded GH¢9,000 which they claimed would be multiplied to GH¢ billion.
He said the accused persons took the money and offered the complainant a bottle of oil to return after two days.
On his return, the complainant gave the bottle of oil to Adu-Gyamfi but in an attempt to open it, the bottle broke.
DSP Frimpong said Azumbe and Adu-Gyamfi told the complainant that because the bottle had broken, there was no money for him and after realizing that he had been defrauded reported the matter to the police who arrested the accused persons.
The matter was adjourned to June 8 for continuation.