The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) yesterday refroze the bank accounts and investments of former Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, and re-seized cash previously taken from her.
The OSP said it had reasonable grounds to suspect that the cash earlier seized from her was tainted property, which must be in its custody, to prevent concealment or loss as probe into corruption allegations against Ms Dapaah continues.
A statement signed and issued by the Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng, in Accra, yesterday, said its latest action was taken after the OSP complied with the ruling and order of the Accra High Court, to unfreeze the frozen bank accounts and investments and return the seized cash sums of Ms Dapaah.
The OSP said the August 31 order of the court was complied with in the presence and assent of Ms Dapaah and her lawyers.
It said the compliance of the court order ended the proceedings of the seizure of the cash from Ms Dapaah, which commenced on July 24, 2023, and the freezing of her bank accounts and investments effected from July 26, 2023.
However, the OSP said investigation into suspected corruption and corruption related offences involving the ownership and source(s) of large amounts of money associated with Ms. Dapaah had been and was still ongoing.
” The ongoing investigation by the OSP of Ms. Dapaah has uncovered varying and sometimes conflicting accounts of the ownership and source(s) of the large amounts of money reportedly stolen from her residence, the cash amounts seized from her by the OSP, and the nature and volume of transactions in her bank accounts and investments.”
The statement said the Special Prosecutor invoked his statutory power under section 38(1) of Act 959 and regulation 19(1) of L.I. 2374 or the freezing of the bank accounts and investments of Ms Dapaah effective yesterday (September 5).
It said the OSP again invoked its statutory power under section 32(1)(a) of Act 959 by directing the seizure from Ms Dapaah of the cash amounts previously seized from her, a directive which has already been carried out by authorised officers of the OSP.
The statement recalled that the Financial and Economic Division of the Accra High Court last week ordered the OSP to return all monies seized from Ms Dapaah within seven days.
The High Court refused to grant the OSP’s application for confirmation on the grounds that the confirmation of seizure application was filed out of time.
The statement said that the OSP did not provide any basis for the seizure and the freezing since it did not disclose the details of the transactions in the accounts; and further that the freezing order was based on public sentiments and without proper investigations.
The former minister became subject of investigation after a case involving her domestic staff allegedly stealing huge sums of money and other valuables from her house emerged.
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Publish date : 2023-09-06 15:00:32