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23.02.2006 General News

Raymond Archer becomes the accused

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Anane's counsel accuse Archer for working for Mrs Rawlings Lawyers for Road Transport Minister, Richard Anane say they have taped recordings to prove that the man who has accused the minister of corruption works for former first Lady, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings.

The lawyers told a panel investigating the allegations that the tape shows that the minister's accuser, Raymond Archer who edits the Enquirer newspaper, used the security apparatus of the former first lady to gather evidence.

They say that the recording was secretly made by a gentleman known as Kwaku Appiah who met with Mr. Archer under the guise of an informer who had evidence on Mr. Anane's illegal transfer of monies to his American mistress.

Mr. Anane's lead lawyer, Jacob Acquah-Sampson, says he will make the tape recording available to the panel of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice, which is investigating the allegations against the minister.

The lawyers say they will also make available a recording of a JOY FM news file programme in which Raymond admitted that he has no evidence of transfers of money to Ms. O'Brien.

Mr. Acquah-Sampson says Raymond Archer told Kweku Appiah when the two met at the Kotoka International Airport here in Accra in February last year, that the former first lady had put her security network in operation to obtain information about Minister Anane and her mistress, Ms O'Brien for him.

And this was recorded. The lawyer said Raymond was desperate for the information because he did not have any evidence to support his numerous publications about the Minister and the petition that he sent to parliament's appointments committee.

Archer denied any links with the former first lady and her security network.

He said he met Kweku Appiah who introduced himself as Joe Richie only because he claimed he had documents to prove that Dr. Anane was transferring monies through Bank of Ghana to Ms. O'Brien.

According to him, even today, he would gladly honour any invitation for more documents to prove that the Minister was indeed transferring monies in excess of his stated income to his mistress.

He denied ever mentioning the former first lady in his conversation with Mr. Appiah and challenged Dr. Anane's lawyers to play the tape.

The story linking the former first lady to Raymond was published in the Ghanaian Voice in February last year.

Raymond told the commission that even though he read the story, he did not exercise his constitutional right to a retraction or a rejoinder, insisting that it is perfectly within his rights to do so.

Answering questions under cross-examination, Raymond Archer who is also editor-in-chief of the Enquirer newspaper said there were rumours that Dr. Anane had bribed some Ghanaian journalists not to publish the story about his affair with Ms. O'Brien.

Lawyer Acquah-Sampson said Raymond's publications were unjustifiably critical of his client, Dr. Anane and were meant to prevent his appointment as a Minister.

He further described the publications as baseless, saying the representations were due to Raymond's inexperience as a journalist.

But Mr. Archer says Dr. Anane voluntarily puts up himself to serve the nation and therefore needs to be held accountable for his acts of commission and omission.

Meanwhile, the commission will today call its second key witness, the wife of the Minister, Mrs. Mercy Anane