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Chief Justice requests for dockets on Osafo Maafo’s Kroll payment case against Domelevo

The Chief Justice, Anin Yeboah has requested for the dockets on the case involving the Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo Maafo against the Auditor General, Daniel Domelovo.

This was revealed by Justice Boakye Adjei, High Court judge hearing the case on Monday.

It is unclear why the Chief Justice has called for the dockets but his decision means the cases have been placed on hold till further directives from him.

The two cases are an appeal by the Senior Minister over a surcharge placed on him by the Auditor-General and a contempt suit against the Auditor-General by Mr. Osafo Maafo.

The Senior Minister, Mr Yaw Osafo Maafo and four other officials from the Ministry of Finance initiated a court action against the Auditor-General, Mr. Daniel Yaw Domelevo to clear their names in relation to what is said to be breaches of the Public Procurement Act (PPA) that resulted in their payment of US$1 million to a private firm, Kroll and Associates.

The Auditor-General had concluded that Kroll was paid for no work done, following what he said was the persistent failure of the Senior Minister to provide proof of actual work done.

Domelevo consequently recommended Disallowance of the payment of the US$1million to Kroll and Associates, which the government, through the Ministry of Finance paid.

Mr Domelevo also surcharged the Senior Minister, Mr Osafo Maafo and four other officials from the Ministry of Finance.

The Auditor-General had indicted the Ministry of Finance and the Senior Minister for paying the UK firm, Kroll and Associates Limited, in 2017 to recover assets from identified wrongdoers, among others, without verifying outcomes.

Mr. Osafo Maafo in a statement said he was resorting to the courts because “the evidence available shows clearly that the Auditor-General erred in law and professional procedures in the exercise of his powers regarding his audit on payments to Kroll and Associates Limited.”

“I have on Wednesday, 11th December 2019, instructed my lawyers to commence legal processes to challenge a Disallowance and Surcharge imposed on me by the Auditor-General following his notice on 24th October 2019.

Government’s defence

In September 2019, the Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, during the meeting with the press stated that the findings that identified the irregularities were false.

The government claimed that Mr. Domelevo did not go through the constitutional practice before going public and announcing the findings.

In October, the Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Maafo in a letter addressed to the Auditor-General also explained that the company actually carried out its obligations and that there was ample evidence of the work done by the firm to merit government’s payment.

He also insisted that approval for the request for single-source procurement of professional services was obtained contrary to claims by the Auditor-General that they failed to seek approval from the Public Procurement Authority.

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