Parities in the Woyome saga are still negotiating – State Attorney

Ms Jasmine Armah, a State Attorney, on Thursday prayed the Commercial Court hearing the writ brought by the Attorney General (AG) against Mr Alfred Agbesi Woyome, an NDC financier, to give the parties in the matter time because they were still negotiating.

She said her instructions were to appeal to the court for time to enable the AG to study the writ and take a date for the next adjournment.

The Attorney General was in court over the payment of 42 million Ghana cedis being a judgment debt awarded to Mr Woyome. The money was paid as compensation for what he alleged was the abrogation of a contract to build stadia for the CAN 2008.

Mr Robertson Akpatsah, Counsel for Mr Woyome who corroborated statement of the State Attorney, said the parties were still negotiating.

The AG in an amended statement of claim filed on August 18, 2010, among others stated that the AG was the plaintiff and the principal legal adviser to the Government while the defendant (Woyome) claimed he is a project financier engineer.

The statement said sometime in 2005, the Government won the bid to host the African Cup of Nations Football Tournament (CAN 2008).

It said government initiated a procurement process for the award of the contract to rehabilitate Ohene Djan and Baba Yara stadia but cancelled the procurement process before it was completed.

The statement said the defendant claiming to have been involved in the financial engineering process before the cancellation of the procurement process in 2005 made a claim against the State for the payment of two per cent of 1,106,470,587 Euros.

The defendant said this was the total amount arranged into the country as a result of the financial engineering process he undertook for Vamed and Waterville, whose bids were adjudged to be the best before cancellation of the procurement process.

The AG, subsequent to the filing of the terms of settlement, had information that the terms of settlement had been procured by mistake because the then government per a letter dated May 4, 2005 signed by Mr Agyeman Manu, Deputy Minister of Finance, stated that government did not take responsibility and was not liable for any transaction entered into by the defendant and his role in the transaction did not create any legal relations with the Government.

It therefore, sought reliefs from the court that the declaration and the terms of settlement filed at the court’s registry on June 4, 2010 to the effect that Mr Woyome should be paid a sum of GHC51,283,480.59 in three equal installments of GHC17,094,495.53 was procured by mistake.

However, Peasah-Boadu & Co, lawyers for Mr Woyome in a counter-claim to the AG’s writ denied all the allegations contained in the statement of claim.

It said the defendant’s claim was that the procurement process for the award of the contract to rehabilitate the stadia was duly completed by the Government as a result of which the Central Tender Review Board by a letter dated August 5, 2005, gave concurrent approval for the award of the contract to Messrs Vamed Engineering Limited.

The defendant said information referred to as contained in the correspondence written by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and signed by Mr Kwaku Agyeman Manu, Deputy Minister of Finance, was available to the defendant and he duly reviewed the documents and concluded by a letter dated April 29, 2010, addressed to the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning that the document created a binding contract between the Government and the defendant as a result of which defendant was entitled to the payment.

In addition, the defendant denied claim that the negotiation on the judgment obtained by the defendant on May 24, 2010 was arrived at by mistake on the part of the defendant.

The defendant said after he had obtained judgment from the Commercial Court on May 24, 2010, for his claim, the AG invited him and his lawyers to a meeting on May 27, 2010, as a result of which an agreement was reached that the judgment debt be settled by the payment of GHC41, 811,480.59 as the judgment debt, 5,000,000 Euros or its cedi equivalent representing half of the interest awarded by the court and cost of GHC25,000. GNA

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