03.04.2006 General News

Mrs Rawlings' lawyer summoned by SFO

03.04.2006 LISTEN
By Daily Guide

Daily Guide -- The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) starts investigations into a foreign account allegedly being operated by the former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings with a South African Bank Nedbank Rosebank.

Accordingly, counsel for the former First Lady, Tony Lithur has been invited by the SFO to assist in investigations.

The SFO has asked Mr Lithur to report to the acting executive director on Tuesday March 28, 2006 to explain “his role in administering or managing funds which may have been obtained from unlawful activity.”

The anti-corruption body has also asked Nana Konadu's counsel to produce a “statement describing and explaining your association and role in the handling of account No 00080729 matter of Mrs Rawlings by attorneys in Johannesburg, South Africa.

According to the Daily Guide the SFO's invitation was premised on a correspondence between Tony Lithur and Fluxmans Attorneys, a South Africa based law firm allegedly managing an account on behalf of the Mrs Rawlings.

However in response to the SFO's request, Mr Lithur invoked the Fifth Amendment and said been a personal legal advisor to the former first Lady, the issue over which he was being asked to submit a personal statement was protected by professional privilege.

“You may be aware that I am the personal advisor to Mrs Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, whose name you have mentioned in your request.

I am a bit surprised though to note that you would nevertheless request me to write a statement on matters that are protected by professional privileges,” he said.

A deep throat source told the Daily Guide that the SFO would at least want to know if the IRS was monitoring the tax returns in Ghana and South Africa where the account is being operated.

“This account may be operated for legitimate business or an illicit business. What ever it is, the business of SFO is to query and satisfy itself that there is no wrong doing” the source said.

The balance of the account as at May 31, 2005 had a credit of $248,212.42.

The first couple has repeatedly announced that they do not have a dollar or a dime in any bank anywhere in the world.

ModernGhana Links