NCA trial: No evidence against 3rd accused – Investigator tells Court
Investigator and sixth prosecution witness in the case of the Republic verses Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie and four others, Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah, has revealed that through out his investigations prior to the charging of the five accused persons in the ongoing trial, he found no evidence of involvement or wrong doing against the third accused person, a Medical Doctor and businessman who was a member of the National Communications Authority (NCA Board), Dr. Nana Owusu -Ensaw.
The investigator and prosecution witness made the disclosure during Cross examination by the defence lawyer for the third accused person, Samuel Cudjoe.
“Dr. Ensaw, in his statement to you, has been explicit that he was not part of any meeting and only got to know of the transaction after payment had been made, isn’t it? Lawyer for the third accused person asked the prosecution witness in open court today. In his answer, Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah said “that is so”.
In a follow up question, counsel for the third accused (A3) asked, “in fact, when you juxtapose the content of these statements together with what you claim to be the results of your investigations, which shows, according to you, that there was no board approval, it is a further confirmation that, the evidence before you is that, A 3 was not part of any deliberations prior to the purchase of this equipment?” “That is correct” Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah affirmed in his answer.
One of the major contentions in the on going trial is the fact that the first accused person, Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie, in his caution statements to the Police indicated that he gave an amount of $500,000.00 dollars to the third accused person to share among the remaining accused persons. The defence lawyer in his quest to establish the truth on those claims asked the prosecution witness and investigator, “in fact as you sit here, you do not have any evidence of a physical payment of the sum of USD $500,000.00 to A3 by any person?”. In his answer, Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah, said “my Lord, physical payment, no. The only evidence I have is A1 (Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie’s) caution statement”.
The investigator and prosecution witness further indicated to the Court that during his investigations, he established that the third accused person owned a company called Jacna Limited. The regulations of the company further confirmed that it was owned by the the third accused person and his wife, Jacqueline Collie Owusu -Ensaw as directors of the company. The company in his evidence in chief in Court had executed a 4.8 million dollars contract with Huawei Technologies Ghana Limited for which he claimed there was no proof of payment. However, he corrected that in Court after the defence lawyer questioned the bases for is conclusion by saying “I must further state that, a day after my evidence in chief, my attention was drawn to the fact that A3 provided the proof of payment by way of a bank statement.
Justice Eric Kyei Balfour’s Court halted proceedings at this point to allow the parties to take a rest and resume sitting on Thursday, the 11th of April 2019. It is expected that lawyer for the third accused person will continue with the cross examination of the prosecution witness at the next Court sitting.
According to the facts of the case, as presented by the Attorney General in the case of the Republic vrs. Eugene Baffoe Bonnie and four others, the first accused, Baffoe-Bonnie, 2nd accused Tettey Tevie, 3rd accused Ensaw and 4th accused person Osman, were allegedly aided by the 5th accused person, Oppong, to engage in the criminal act. It said the previous administration had contracted an Israeli company, NSO Group Technology Limited, to supply a listening equipment at a cost of $6 million to enable the authorities to monitor conversations of persons suspected to be engaged in terror activities.
A local agent, Infraloks Development Limited, charged $2 million to facilitate the transaction, bringing the total sum to $8 million. The facts explained that the National Security did not have the money to fund the transaction and for that reason the NCA, which had supervisory jurisdiction over the use of such equipment, was asked to fund the project. The facts sheet also said $4 million was withdrawn from the NCA’s account, while $1 million out of the withdrawn amount was deposited into the account of the Israeli company. The A-G explained that the remaining $3 million was lodged in the account of Oppong, who acted as a representative of the local agents, Infraloks Development Ltd.
All the accused persons have pleaded not guilty to various counts of causing financial loss of $4 million to the State. The High Court has also granted each accused person a $1-million bail, with three sureties, and directed them to surrender their passports to the registrar of the court.