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22.10.2005 Crime & Punishment

Former BoG Director wins case of wrongful dismissal

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Accra, Oct. 22, GNA - An Accra Fast Track High Court on Friday held that Mr Sabastian Dick Komla Gavor, a former official of the Bank of Ghana (BOG), was wrongfully dismissed by the Bank and, therefore, entered judgment in his favour.

The Court presided over Mr Justice Yaw Appau ordered BoG to pay his entire End of Service Benefit, if any, from the day of his employment to May 30, 2000 when the Bank dismissed him.

It further asked BoG to pay a total sum of his employment salaries from May 2000 as damages on loss of promotion and employment. BoG was further asked to pay Mr Gavor's salary, including all increments, from the day of his dismissal.

The Court further ordered BoG to pay a cost of 20 million cedis to Mr Gavor but it should be taxed.

During the trial, the Court noted that Mr Gavor was not given the chance to appear before a Committee set up by BoG to respond allegations against him.

It further noted that the Committee headed by Mr Aseidu Mantey of BoG and other officials visited Mr Gavor at the BNI cells without informing him about their mission.

According to the Court, Mr Gavor conversed with them and did not realise that all that he was telling members was going to be used by the Committee.

"How can the Committee visit someone in incarceration for interrogation? At least he should be given the chance to come out of custody to respond to the various accusations."

It, therefore, entreated the BoG to follow the necessary procedure in future cases.

On the whether or not Mr Gavor did cause financial loss to the State, the Court said it was a criminal matter that had been determined by the Regional Tribunal, which acquitted him.

In May 2000, Mr Gavor, a former Director in Charge of Budget, BoG, was dismissed following his alleged involvement in the transfer of 1.5 million dollars to Hajia Baby Ocansey, now a convict.

On Tuesday, August 13, 2002, the tribunal acquitted and discharged three others - two former officials of the BoG and a businessman - who had been charged jointly with Ocansey.

The tribunal ruled that the Prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case against Mr Gavor and Mr Justice Larbie, the two former employees of the BoG and Alhaji Sidiq Gimala, the businessman. Soon after his acquittal he wrote to the Bank asking it to pay all his entitlement but the Bank refused.

He, therefore, filed a suit against BoG but the Bank did not file any counter claim. In Mr Gavor's writ of Summons, he sought an order for payment of three months' salaries lay off without notice and payment of End of Service Benefit to date.

He also sought damages for prospective loss of employment and general damages for wrongful dismissal.

Mr Gavor was further seeking interest on his three-month salary in lay off notice and the ESB and other orders that the Court deemed fit.

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