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03.03.2009 Politics

Alhaji Mumuni: I will only resign if...


Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, on Tuesday said he would only resign if it was proven that he had committed any act of criminality and or corruption.

He made the statement at a press conference to set the records straight on a court judgement against him in a case he filed in the courts seeking damages for defamation against the publishers, editor and a reporter of Daily Guide Newspaper and the auditors who compiled a forensic audit report that sought to incriminate him.

“…Should it be shown or proven that I have stolen a single pesewa of taxpayer's money or taken a personal benefit whether directly or indirectly or been corrupt or abused my office or been guilty of wrongdoing, I am prepared not only to resign…but also offer myself for prosecution and any penalties prescribed by law,” he said.

A pressure group, Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG), presented a petition to the Appointments Committee of Parliament seeking to stall the appointment of Alhaji Mumuni as Minister.

During his vetting the Minority in Parliament walked out when their effort to seek a suspension of the vetting to await the determination of the court case.

A couple of days ago, the Accra Fast Track High Court dismissed the claims of Alhaji Mumuni and ruled in favour of the defendants and awarded cost against the plaintiff.

Alhaji Mumuni noted that the dismissal of his claim for damages against the defendant did not mean that he had been found guilty of criminal charges, saying that he took the matter to court and not the other way round.

“I have never been charged with any criminal conduct before a court of law nor has any charge been brought against me before the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), so I am a free man,” he said.

Touching on the court judgement itself, he said he had pointed out to the court that, there were important omissions from the record or proceedings based on which the judgement was given, but the court ignored his call for corrections to be made.

He said he had subsequently instructed his lawyers to challenge the court ruling through the legal process.

Alhaji Mumuni said he was not surprised that his political opponents would seek to drag his name in the mud based on a report by Baffuor-Awuah and Associates given that it was the same organizations which conducted forensic audits involving NDC officials like Mr. Dan Abodakpi, Kwame Peprah, Dr. Ato Quarshie and Ibrahim Adam, some of whom ended up in jail.

“I feel like am in a slave ship of the NPP and I am surprised that the NPP will use the audit outfit against their political opponents in such a disgraceful manner,” he said.

He said beside the fact that the said forensic audit was not properly authorized as per the 1992 Constitution, it was also not properly laid before Parliament for eight years.
“If the NPP claims that I have squandered 19 million Ghana cedis, then why have they waited for eight years before they are bringing the matter up,” he said.

Alhaji Mumuni said he was also surprised that the spokesperson for AFAG, who also doubled as counsel for Daily Guide Newspaper in the defamation case, could go to every extent to snub the ethics of his profession and the duty to uphold the integrity of the court and commit such contempt of court by discussing a court case at a press conference.

He assured the public that he was innocent and would go to every extent to prove that.

Source: GNA