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17.12.2004 Crime & Punishment

I didn't receive any personal gift from Dr Banarfo - Ayittey

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Accra, Dec. 17, GNA - Hanny Sherry Ayittey, treasurer of the 31st December Women's Movement (DWM), on Friday told an Accra Fast Track Court that she never received any personal gift from Dr Albert Owusu-Banarfo, a prosecution witness.
Ayittey denied ever receiving 180,000 dollars as monetary gift from Dr Owusu-Banarfo, a prosecution witness in the Ghana Rubber Estates Limited (GREL) divestiture case, in April 1998.
She was continuing her evidence-in-chief in the case in which she and two others are being tried for their alleged involvement in corruption during the privatisation of GREL.
The two are Emmanuel Amuzu Agbodo, former executive secretary of the Divestiture Implementation Committee (DIC) and Ralph Casely-Hayford, a businessman.
The three allegedly took various sums of money from the management of GREL to influence the DIC board to divest the company in favour of Societ=E9 Industrielle Plantation Hevea (SIPH).
They have pleaded not guilty to their individual charges and the court, presided over by Mr J. C. Amonoo-Monney, Appeal Court Judge with an additional responsibility on the case as a High Court Judge, has admitted each of them to a self-recognisance bail.
Continuing with her evidence-in-chief, Ayittey told the court that in April 1998, she neither received any invitation letter from DIC to attend any meeting, nor perform any function at the DIC in respect of GREL's divestiture.
She stated that she did not have a permanent office at the DIC, and that she only went there upon invitation for discussions on specific issues.
When asked by her counsel whether she had any personal bank account in Austria, Ayittey responded in the negative.
Ayittey is being represented by Mr David Lamptey, while Mr John-Hanson Senoo and Mr Rodney Heward-Mills are defending Agbodo and Casely-Hayford.
Further hearing of the case has been adjourned to Wednesday, December 22, for Ayittey to continue with her evidence-in-chief.

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