“There may be some big men behind the scheme, but they are hiding their faces for these innocent people to suffer. Further investigations into the case is necessary, My Lord.” This was the plea of Mr. F.A. Acquaye, who described himself as a friend of the court. This was after the Ajumako District Magistrate Court in the Central Region, presided by over by Mr. K.B. Enimil, had slapped a fine of GH¢1,000 on Emmanuel Osafo Aduamuah, an Accountant, for abetment in forging the promotion of 14 staff of the local assembly, and the subsequent loss of GH¢21,244.00 to the state.Emmanuel Osafo Aduamuah, an Accountant at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (FAO) office, stationed at Breman Essikuma, pleaded guilty on three counts of forgery, abetment and conspiracy, and  was sentenced on his own plea to a fine of  GH¢400 for forgery, GH¢300 for abetment, and GH¢300 for conspiracy. In default, he would spend thirty-eight weeks in jail.

Osafo Aduamuah was arrested by the police in June, this year, for being the brain behind the promotion of fourteen workers at the Ajumako-Enyan-Essiam (AEE) District Assembly to the position of senior ranks, with subsequent increases in their salaries.

He was sent to court on Wednesday, June 8, 2011, to face the law, and was remanded into police custody for further investigations. However, the accused person was later released on police enquiry bail.

Also appearing before the court in connection with the same case were fourteen workers of the AEE District Assembly, and a staff of the Data Department of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.

They are Georgina Appiah, Gifty Obeng, Florence Baidoo, Kofi Dei, Kwame Yawson, Maxwell K. Adjokatcher and Matthew Appiah.

The rest are Christian Boatemaa, Stephen Addae, Collins Hammond, Sarah Quaboh, Stephen Otabil, Emmanuel Quaboh and Felicia Ampah, all workers at the AEE District Assembly, and Juliet Frimpong, a worker at the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.

They were accused of forging documents to promote themselves to the position of senior ranks, with subsequent increases in their salaries.

The workers, according to Detective Chief Inspector Broni, were reported to the police by their superiors, the District Chief Executive Officer (DCE), Mr. Light Koomson, District Coordinating Director, Mr. P.K. Asamoah, District Finance Officer, Pobby Donkor, and the District Personnel Officer, Mr. Biney, when they detected the anomaly on the workers’ payroll.

The prosecutor noted that investigations conducted by the police revealed that the convict, Emmanuel Osafo Aduamuah, was the brain behind the workers promotion to the position of senior ranks, with subsequent increases in their salaries.

He further told the court that Juliet Frimpong was also fingered as having a hand in the scheme, hence their charge of forgery, conspiracy and abetment to embezzle GH¢21,244 belonging to the state.

All the fourteen accused workers at the AEE District Assembly pleaded guilty with explanations to the three charges leveled against them.

However, Juliet Frimpong pleaded not guilty to all three counts, and was subsequently released on GH¢5,000 bail with two sureties to be justified. Hearing of the case was therefore adjourned to July 28, 2011.

Prior to the Magistrate’s pronouncement, a friend of the court, Mr. F.A. Acquaye, pleaded for further investigations to be conducted into the case, since he suspected there might be some big men behind the scheming at the Assembly.

“There may be some big men behind it, but they are hiding their faces for these innocent people to suffer. Further investigations into the case is necessary, My Lord,” Mr. Acquaye pleaded.

He demanded to know who was in charge of promotions and the processes involved in promoting staff at the Assembly, since, to him, the workers couldn’t have promoted themselves to a higher level to attract fat salaries.

“As a friend of the court, I want to know how the workers at the Assembly are promoted, and who promotes them?” he demanded.

The District Finance Officer, Mr. Donkor, intervened and said that it was the District Coordinating Director who promotes workers at the Assembly, but was quick to add that prior to the detection of the anomaly, Mr. P.K. Asamoah was not aware of the promotions by the workers.

The response of Mr. Donkor infuriated Lawyer Acquaye, who responded with another question. “As a Coordinating Officer, workers under you have been promoted, and you do not know? That means there is something fishy, and if further investigation is conducted, a whole lot of people will be caught.

“My Lord, if the explanation is that the workers couldn’t promote themselves, except by the help of somebody, then I will suggest that the case is tried, and whoever is responsible at the assembly, bears the brunt,” he suggested to the court.

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