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LCs, Kulendi, Ato Forson, medical excuse – Analysis of the ‘explosive’ Jakpa-Dame audio

The much-awaited audio conversation between Attorney-General Godfred Dame and Richard Jakpa, an accused person in the ambulance purchase case involving Minority Leader Cassiel Ato Forson, was published on Tuesday, May 28, 2024.

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) insisted that the contents were part of incontrovertible evidence against the A-G who they accused of coaching Jakpa to skew evidence to help the prosecution to jail Forson.

The 16-minute audio was played at a press conference after the NDC national chairman, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, gave an address on the political implications that the trial had assumed and why Dame’s continued stay in office was untenable.

In this piece, GhanaWeb analyzes the major planks of the conversation that was centered on the ambulance purchase contract, alleged confirmation of the A-G’s bid to use Jakpa against Forson and their meetings at the home of a Supreme Court judge.

00:00 – 08:11 minutes – Ambulance contracts, Letters of Credits and other matters

The tape starts with Dame asking whether contract payments are usually made after goods are delivered.

Jakpa explains that while the A-G is right, the financial instrument for the project was an irrevocable Letter of Credit (LC).

He explained that the contract required payment by LCs and that for every 50 ambulances out of the total of 200, a LC was required as security.

“The contract is for 200 ambulances, you establish LC for every 50 tranche,” he stated but Dame disagreed.

“It is their letters that confirm that both from government and from the principal, an LC must be gotten for every 50 ambulances. So I cannot go against what the government and contract says at that time,” Jakpa stressed.

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He goes on to explain what non-advanced payment meant after a query from Dame: “When you ship the goods from your port of origin, the Bill of Laden is what you use as LC. This means when goods are shipped (LCs are established) not when they have been delivered in Ghana.

“The contract is not saying government should extablish one LC which is 15.8m euros at a go… it says to establish an LC for 50 and then for other subsequent LCs till 200 ends.”

Jakpa also explained matters about LCs as condition precedent: “When a letter of credit is established, it had a condition precedent to be honoured, which is when shipping documents are presented to Ghana International Bank, that is how the LC will be honoured, it is a security for the supplier to invest money, when the ambulance is shipped, banks will now honour LC.

“There is no way supplier can cash LC before shipping, because condition precedent will be sent to GIB.”

09:11 onwards – Anti-Ato Forson and Yonny Kulendi

“Frankly speaking, as you are saying, if I agree to your position, how you want to go about it and how you want me to go about answering my questions and things, if I go by that way, frankly speaking, I will be dishonest.

“Because I know that is not how it is supposed to be and I will be dishonest in such a way that I will be assisting for someone I know to be completely innocent about this, for example, Ato Forson to be jailed because I knew something was wrong and I decided to keep quiet and to answer the question in a way that will make your case better for you to jail him.

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“I will be battling with my conscience, that is the problem I am having with Yonny Kulendi, when we went to Yonny Kulendi’s place. Anytime you bring up this issue, that is the problem I am having. Because me, for example, I am in this case because I’m innocent and I’m going through an ordeal.

“So I’m looking at another person, also going to go through an ordeal and through me because I know the truth and I decide not to say it because I want to help the A-G make his case. And I ask myself, what is my interest in it?

10:20 – 10:50 – Dame’s fears of being recorded

Dame butts in, expresses fears that the conversation is being recorded, Jakpa comes in and allays any such fears before veering into meetings at Supreme Court Justice Yonny Kulendi’s home, where issues about the case were discussed.

“I am not asking you to help me… any way, that is fine. Even this one, it is on the phone, I don’t even know whether anyone is recording,” Dame is heard saying.

Jakpa replies: “Oh no, you don’t need to be worried about that.”

Dame reiterates: “I don’t know whether you are recording or somebody is recording.”

Jakpa brings in Kulendi: “You and I, you’ve been meeting me at my cousin’s place and you have been bringing this issue up several times and I keep telling you that I cannot do that because it doesn’t sit well with me.

10:51 – Jakpa accuses Anemana as Dame returns to matters related to the contract

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“If there is somebody who authorized this payment to go on even though GIB raised issues, it is Anemana because he authorized the payment,” Jakpa is heard saying in reference to the second accused in the case, against who the state has dropped all charges.

The issue about former Finance Minister came up and was addressed by Jakpa, “Seth Terkper’s letter for suspension of production was contrary to terms of contract and that letter went to A-G’s office and it was debunked and A-G’s legal opinion overrode that letter.”

He said the Health Ministry honoured the LC part but refused the pre-shipment inspection under the late Sherry Ayittey’s tenure as Health Minister, a decision he criticized.

14:40 – Dame-Jakpa exchange over medical excuse

Dame talks about his absence and proposes Jakpa employs medical leave to delay the next sitting: “That’s my timetable for the rest of the week. Even the whole of next week, I will not be around, so if there is a way of you not finishing next week, I would appreciate.”

Jakpa weighs in: “I would surely not finish next week because the documents are many. So, you will surely go and come and meet me. That will also depend on the judge’s behaviour.

Dame: But you can do one medical excuse next week.

Jakpa: Ok, fine, if you bring a medical excuse next week.

Dame: I said you. How can I bring a medical excuse?

Jakpa: Ah, my brother, you want this woman to issue a bench warrant for me again? Because you can see I was on admission struggling for my life and this woman issued a bench warrant for me….

 

Source: Ghanaweb

Mr Riddims

Mr Riddims, CEO of Riddims Ghana Network who is a Blogger | Artiste Promoter | Website Designer | Radio DJ | Artiste Manager | Music Distributer etc.

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