Monday, August 23, 2010

Atta Akyea cries foul

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By William Yaw Owusu

Monday August 23, 2010
Ata Akyea, Member of Parliament for Abuakwa South, has expressed concern about the way and manner in which Papa Joseph Adom, owner of J. Adom Limited, a construction firm, is using the media and the police to tarnish his reputation by avoiding to pay him his legal fees.

Mr. Akyea has been accused of professional misconduct by his former clients who are claiming that the MP misused more than GH¢230,000 whilst he was legal counsel for the company.

Managing Director of the company, Kwabena Arhin, also alleges the MP withdrew $60,000 from the company’s account to purchase a house at the Airport residential area in a fictitious transaction.

But a news release issued in Accra and signed by the MP said “the pathetic story of my former client who I have faithfully served for the past seven years, and who is now hell-bent to destroy my reputation is a book to be written, but I will simplify the issues and facts and let the court of public opinion judge.”

“There is documentary evidence that I have worked assiduously for Papa Joseph Adom, as I affectionately call him, who is the owner and the sole directing mind of J. Adom Limited. In all my dealings with Papa Joseph Adom, I have never made the acquaintance of anybody called Mr. Arhin.”

“It therefore comes to me as a complete surprise that the said Mr. Arhin, claiming to be Managing Director of J. Adom Ltd, has fed inaccurate information to the press in clear manipulation of confidential lawyer-client communication between Papa Joseph Adom and me,” he said.

Lawyer Akyea said “it is with a clear conscience that I state that the recent smear campaign via the press is a ruse by Papa Joseph Adom to avoid his just debts, as he has refused to be persuaded that the labourer is worthy of his hire.”

He said he represented Joseph Adom and J. Adom Ltd in diverse ways, citing cases such as suit No. AC 2/2003 between Engineers and Planners Ltd and J. Adom Ltd, and his legal fees were GH¢ 53, 460. 98 and USD62,069. 00,which Mr. Adom had not paid.

In another case, suit No. AC 19/2007, between Vivendi Construction Company Ltd and J. Adom Ltd, his legal fees were assessed at GH¢ 17, 781. 76 but it remained outstanding while in suit No. 145/2007, between J. Adom Ltd and Harry Sintim Aboagye, his legal fees were assessed at GH¢ 6,600 .00 and not paid.

In the suit No. 154/2007, between J. Adom Ltd and International Structures Group Ltd, the MP said his unpaid legal fees were GH¢ 7, 850 .14 adding “in the botched property sale of an Airport Residential Area building, I charged the very reasonable amount of USD 9, 500. 00 which is ten per cent of USD 95, 000. 00 which I saved J. Adom from paying to a swindler.”

“On Papa Joseph Adom’s instructions to cause the arrest of Joseph Krampa aka Joseph Amissah through the engagement of private investigators, the cost of the operation was USD 5, 000. 00,” adding “for undertaking negotiations with the respective solicitors for SIC and one Eric Defour in respect of the acquisition of a property adjacent to Papa Joseph Adom’s house at Ringway Estates, my fees are assessed as USD 5, 000.00”.

“Based on all the work I have undertaken for Papa Joseph Adom, as summarized above, the total fees owed me are in the sum of USD 81, 569. 20 and GH¢85, 692. 88. The cold refusal of Papa Joseph Adom to pay me my fair and just legal fee surprises me, and I do not recognize him from the man I slavishly worked for, for seven years without strictly insisting on immediate payment of fees when they fell due.”

He said Papa Joseph Adom cooked up a story to the police that “I have been keeping his monies without his knowledge, while leaving out the glaring truth that he owes me a whopping USD 81, 569. 20 and GH¢85, 692. 88 which he wants to avoid paying at all cost.”

He denied colluding with Krampa to rip off his accuser of USD 60, 000. 00 saying “it was Papa Joseph Adom who walked into my law office with Joseph Krampa to introduce him to me in connection with a house that Papa Joseph Adom wanted to buy at the price of USD 155, 000 .00 which seemed to me to be lower than such a house should go for.”

“I do not think it is fair for my client to use the police in the manner he did. The record shows that he was stampeding the police to prosecute me. He knew that my name mattered to me and my political standing was sensitive and priceless. My doors are still open for accounts unless the singular aim of a man I have shared deep professional confidence with is to use the powers that be, i.e. the press and the police, to destroy me.”

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