The reinstated Chief Accountant of the Electoral Commission (EC), Kwaku Owusu Agyei-Larbi, has refunded the GH¢350,000 staff endowment funds he had in his possession.
The Chief Justice’s Committee, which investigated complaints for the removal of the EC Chairperson and her two deputies, Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku-Amankwah, also found that Mr. Agyei-Larbi had in his possession monies belonging to the Commission which should have been lodged into the Commission’s account.
The Committee, therefore recommended that Mr Agyei-Larbi is made to refund the money or in default, be charged with stealing.
Documents sighted by Citi News show that the Chief Accountant has since complied with the recommendations of the Chief Justice Committee.
The lawyer for Mr. Agyei-Larbi, Jerry John Asiedu, told Citi News, his client had paid more than the recommended GH¢350,000 into the EC’s account because he had been handed more than the stated amount for safekeeping by the Director of Electoral Services.
“I can confirm that we have actually paid more than 350,000 that the committee recommended that we pay to the commission’s account. The amount is in excess of almost 430,000. My client has always stated that he had funds with him more than the 350,000 that was being kept by him and that the same assistant director of electoral services earlier brought him some funds and there was a balance of GH¢72,000. So we added it to the GH¢350,000 and paid all into the Commission’s account,” he said.
Kwaku Agyei Larbi, who had been suspended together with the Finance Director, Dr. Joseph Kwaku Asamoah over the alleged misappropriation of GHc480,00.00 EC Staff Endowment Fund had earlier petitioned the Attorney General to recall him, promising to make the funds available if that is done.
Meanwhile, the Director of Finance at the Electoral Commission, Dr. Joseph Kwaku Asamoah, has also been reinstated effective July 6, 2018.
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.