Cape Coast, Feb.9, GNA- An official of the Central Regional Directorate of the Ghana Education Service (GES) at Cape Coast, who is alleged to have forced a retired tutor to pay him an amount of 54 million cedis from her gratuity, was on Thursday granted 10 million cedis bail with a surety to be justified.
The amount was for helping to expedite the processing the documents for payment of the gratuity Benjamin Ntsiful, 56, pleaded not guilty to extortion and would reappear on Tuesday, February 28.
Prosecuting, Chief Inspector Augustine Amonoo told the court that the complainant, one Madam Lucy Bannerman Sarsah now deceased, was a tutor at Saint Augustine's College and retired in 2004, while Ntsiful works at the pensions unit of the Central Regional directorate of the GES.
He said Ntsiful convinced Madam Sarsah that he could help expedite the processing of her documents and demanded that she paid him that amount, when she received her benefits, to which she "reluctantly" agreed.
He also alleged that in March last year, when Madam Sarsah received her gratuity Ntsiful accompanied her to the Cape Coast branch of the Ghana Commercial Bank where he collected 54 million cedis of the 125.775 million cedis she received.
Chief inspector Amonoo further alleged that Madam Sarsah later became "depressed and fell ill" as a result, and lodged a complaint with the regional director of education who managed to retrieve 10 million cedis of the amount for her.
He said Madam Sarsah died on November 17 last year and the family followed up the case, and made a report to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) in Accra, and Ntsiful was arrested. He said during investigations, Ntsiful told the police that Madam Sarsah had "willingly" given the money to him. According to the prosecutor, Ntsiful had since refunded 44 million cedis.