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18.04.2005 General News

Plumber in court over fake World Bank projects

By GNA

Accra, April 18, GNA - A plumber who allegedly collected 163.5 million cedis from three contractors under the pretext of awarding them World Bank projects at the Ministry of Works and Housing to build flats for the Police at Obuasi on Monday appeared at an Accra Circuit Court charged with fraud.

Paul Adjei and his accomplice Joseph Biney, who is now at large, have been charged with four counts of conspiracy and fraud. Adjei pleaded not guilty and the court admitted him to a 250 million-cedi bail with sureties. He is report to the Police every Friday.

Adjei is to reappear on May 16. The case of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Kofi Abraham is that the complainants are Mr Kojo Boakye, Mr Kwame Osei and Mr Paul Okyere Bamfoe.

The prosecution said Biney is a technical officer Grade II with Osu Castle Branch of the Public Works Department and Adjei undertakes plumbing works at Dansoman.

Last year, Biney met Adjei, his former classmate, in Accra and introduced himself as an engineer with the Ministry of Works and Housing in charge of World Bank projects.

Biney therefore "employed" Adjei and advised him to go round and convince contractors to give monies out to enable them to get World Bank contracts.

The prosecution said Adjei succeeded in convincing Mr Boakye who gave out 122.5 million cedis while Mr Osei and Mr Bamfoe gave out 26 million cedis and 15 million cedis respectively.

Biney gave Mr Boakye and Mr Osei their contract documents to proceed to Obuasi to put up flats for the Ghana Police Service. Mr Okyere was also taken to La Trade Fair site where he was also shown land where he was to put up a public library and restaurant. The complainants were made to believe that they were going to be paid by the World Bank after completion of work.

The prosecution said after awarding the contracts, Biney sent Adjei to go and collect an additional 30 million cedis from Mr Boakye to influence sector Minister.

Mr Boakye became suspicious and requested the two accused persons to accompany him so that he would personally offer the money to the sector Minister.

On reaching the reception of the Ministry of Works and Housing, Biney told Adjei and Mr Boakye to wait at the reception while he checked on the Minister.

The receptionist at the Ministry hinted Mr Boakye that Biney and Adjei were not working at the ministry.

Prosecution said Adjei was arrested and handed over to the police but Biney disappeared. Soon after information on Adjei's arrest had gone round, the two other complainants informed the Police that the two men had also defrauded them.

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