After one year of ‘forced leave’, EC’s Finance Director is reinstated

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The Director of Finance at the Electoral Commission, Dr. Joseph Kwaku Asamoah, has been reinstated effective July 6, 2018.

“I, Dr. Joseph Kwaku Asamoah, wish to serve public notice of my assumption of duty as the Director of Finance at the Electoral Commission of Ghana,” he said in a statement.

Dr. Asamoah was asked to proceed on leave on July 7, 2017, together with two others – Deputy EC chair, Georgina Opoku Amankwa and the EC’s Chief Accountant, Kwaku Agyei Larbi—over alleged misappropriation of GHc480,00.00 EC Staff Endowment Fund.

“The said investigation has so far been concluded and report thereon was submitted to the Attorney General’s Office for advice. It is important to note that the content of the advice from the Attorney General’s Office made no mention of me, neither as a suspect nor an accessory to the commission of the alleged misappropriation as earlier articulated by my solicitors,” he said.

Dr. Asamoah in his statement said he was surprised as to why he was asked to proceed on leave despite not having anything to do with the said claims.

“My surprise therefore, is why the former Chairperson directed me to proceed on leave on a subject she knew ab initio had nothing to do with me…On 6th July 2018, EOCO directed the Human Resource Director to recall me from leave. I have accordingly resumed duty with immediate effect,” he added.

He used the opportunity to thank all those who supported him during his trying times, and assured to discharge his duties as expected of him.

“I stand resolute and will continue to discharge my duties with high ethical standards to the good people of Ghana to strengthen our enviable record of democratic credentials,” he added.

Reinstate me now else…

Kwaku Asamoah had in January 2018 through his lawyers, written to the Electoral Commission to immediately reinstate him or face his wrath.

The Finance Director at the time argued that it was unjust for him to be locked out of his office when the alleged malfeasance did not happen under his jurisdiction.

Reinstate me; I’ll refund EC’s GHc360,000 – Chief Accountant begs AG

The EC’s Chief Accountant, Kwaku Agyei Larbi, who was also suspended together with the Finance Director had earlier petitioned the Attorney General to recall him.

He said this will enable him to release an amount of GHc360,000 to the EC as recommended by the Chief Justice’s Committee which investigated the petition for the removal of the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Charlotte Osei and two of her deputies from office.

Mr. Owusu Agyei-Larbi’s petition to the Attorney General from his lawyer, John Jery Asiedu said his client is “ready and willing” to return to his office to give back the money to the Electoral Commission.

“Our client wishes to state categorically that the amount of money was only brought into his office for safe keeping by the Assistant Director of Electoral Service because it is only our client’s office that has a secured safe at the Commission. The disbursement or purposes of the funds are solely known to the said Assistant Director of Electoral Services.”

Charlotte Osei removed

These events are coming up after President Akufo-Addo on June 28, 2018, removed the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Charlotte Osei and her two deputies – Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku Amankwa – from office, upon the recommendations of a committee set up by the Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo, pursuant to Article 146(4) of the Constitution, to investigate separate complaints brought by some Ghanaian citizens.

Charlotte Osei was accused of various procurement breaches, whilst the deputies were also found guilty of same offenses as well as financial malfeasance.

Although government spokespersons have justified the move, some members of the opposition have challenged it, alleging that it is part of a grand plan by the NPP government to rig the 2020 elections.



ABOUT: Ellsamwise King

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