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25.05.2005 General News

Hotel Kufuor: Mr Saude To Issue Statement Today

By Statesman

Accra, May 25, (Statesman) -- Gizelle Yajzi, the woman who claims to have negotiated the purchase of the uncompleted West Airport hotel on behalf of the President is to be challenged today as a 'blackmailer and a liar'.

The challenge, expected to be in a press statement today, will come from the man who negotiated the sale on behalf of Mr. Saude, the previous owner.

Meanwhile, the Office of the President has issued a statement categorically denying that President Kufuor owns the building near his house. Chief of Staff, Kwadwo Mpiani says President Kufuor has never to sought to purchase the property under any guise and has therefore not requested any individual or group to negotiate on his behalf. Also speaking exclusively to the Statesman, Henrie David Yeboah, the son-in-law of Mr. Saude, said at no time did Ms Yajzi make it known to the Saude family that she was negotiating on behalf of the President. On the contrary, she was allegedly seeking to acquire the property on behalf of a Spanish non-governmental organisation.

The woman's own spirited offensive against the President appears to support the latest twist from the Saud family. She told Radio Gold: "I will never say anything that I don't have proof of. I have even brought people from Europe to Ghana to visit the hotel".

She however went on to add, "They are lying to the people of the country, the owner of the hotel is John Agyekum Kufuor who is the President of Ghana. But the Member of Parliament for Afigya Sekyere East, Mr. Yeboah told the Statesman yesterday that he was given the power of attorney by his father-in-law to find a buyer for the uncompleted building.

"We decided to sell the hotel and the authority was given to me by my father-in-law to sell it." He further disclosed that the first memorandum of understanding was signed with a prospective buyer back in April 3, 2001, presumably over a year and a half before Chief Kufuor showed interest. He said he approached several people including Samuel Osei Kuffuor of Bayern Munich and Charles Wayo of East Legon.

"When Ms Yajzi first came to us, she said the Spanish government had given her a grant and the intention was to use the building for a Spanish NGO. When reminded that the lady has said publicly that she recorded on audio tape the whole negotiation process, Saude's son-in-law told the Statesman that he dares her to play it. He described the woman as exhibiting all the hallmarks of a blackmailer.

Another seemingly bizarre allegation from Ms Yajzi, a lady who claims she offered financial consultancy services for the government in return for commission, is that President Kufuor initially approached her for a loan to purchase the hotel. Her story is that she told the President she couldn't finance the purchase, after which he allegedly tasked her to negotiate on his behalf.

Yesterday she sent seismic shockwaves through the country when she alleged on JoyfM that she had an intimate relationship with President Kufuor for one year and that she has since been married for two years.

Incredibly, she said she even recorded 'private' conversations with the President. This speaks of a person who appears to have set out right from the onset on a professional expedition of blackmail.

A few journalists confirm that she established contacts with them over a year ago, sometimes to get them to help facilitate her apparent blackmailing scheme. The pretty-looking Ms Yajzi attempted but failed at that time to use the Independent newspaper to perpetuate the alleged blackmail agenda but the paper refused to play ball.

It was at that time that allegations began appearing in certain anti-NPP newspapers that President Kufuor was the father of twins, with their names given as Phillip and John.

Roland Acquah Stevens of Radio Gold then established contact with her last year. But she categorically denied publicly ever having children with the Ghanaian President. She even said words to the effect that her child was a teenager and she was no longer capable of mothering a child!

The Castle statement signed by Chief of Staff Kwadwo Mpiani read: "The Office of the President has issued a statement denying that President Kufuor is the real owner of a hotel building close to his residence at the airport residential area, an official statement said in Accra on Tuesday. "The President wishes to state that he has never sought to purchase the hotel under any guise, and has therefore not requested any individual or group to negotiate for the purchase of the said hotel on his behalf," said the statement, signed by Mr. Kwadwo Mpiani, Chief of Staff and Minister for Presidential Affairs.

The statement said while the President's eldest son, Mr. John Addo Kufuor, also known as "chief Kufuor," has indicated that he has an interest in the said property, media reports sought to impugn this by alleging that the President Kufuor is the real owner and not his son. "His Excellency denies this categorically and says there is no basis for this unfounded allegation," the statement added.

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