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29.04.2006 General News

Anane sues "Enquirer" for Five Billion Cedi

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Dr Richard Winfred Anane, Minister of Transportation, has filed a suit at an Accra Fast Track High Court, praying it to restrain the publisher of the Enquirer Newspaper, the Editor-in-Chief and the Editor, from publishing further defamatory words against him.

Additionally, Dr Anane is claiming five billion cedis damages for libel against the Focal Media Limited, the publisher, Mr Raymond Archer, Editor-in-Chief and Mr Owusu Sarpong, the Editor of the paper.

In his statement of claim, Dr Anane stated that on its front page issue of May 30-June 1, 2005 of the newspaper, it published false defamatory words against him, alleging that the Minister had improperly entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on behalf of Ghana with Miss Alexandria O'Brien, said to have a child with the Minister at a time when he had already started a sexual relationship with her.

Dr Anane said the newspaper further alleged that he had directly or indirectly placed himself in a position where his personal interest conflicted with his position and office as a Minister of State. Again, he said, on the front page of April 13-19, 2006 issue, the "Enquirer" reported that in her testimony before the Commission on Human Rights and Adminisstration (CHRAJ) early this month, Miss Alexandria allegedly told the Commission that on her two separate trips to Ghana, she received a sweetheart cheque with the face value of 823,000 dollars (about eight billion cedis) and at least 10,000 dollars kickback from Dr Anane and his henchmen after the Minister signed a contractor's payment certificate.
Dr Anane contended that the author of those false publications was Mr Archer who petitioned the Appointments Committee of Parliament in February last year against his appointment.
He contended that by those publications, not only was his reputation seriously damaged, but had suffered considerable distress and embarrassment.
The Minister stated that to counteract the adverse effects of the publications and to refute its allegations, the five billion cedis requested for would cater for the legal and related costs he had incurred.