By William Yaw Owusu
Saturday, February 27, 2016
After apparently refusing to make themselves available to be served with court documents regarding an action instituted against the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), the accountant, who was fired recently by the party, has secured a court order to serve the party’s officials by substitution.
The accountant, Mathias Mokono Wilson, revealed in his statement of claim how the Mahama-led NDC government paid a total of over GH¢5.5 million to the Electoral Commission (EC), the reason for which is yet to be established - after which the party gave him the marching order to vacate the office.
Mr. Wilson, whose dismissal triggered the court action, could not succeed in serving the party he had served for 23 years the initial court papers, compelling him to seek an order for substituted service.
The NDC had obviously been avoiding service and as a result, his lawyer, Prince Frederick Nii Ashie Neequaye, moved a motion for an order of substituted service at the Industrial and Labour Court Division of the High Court in Accra and secured the order last Tuesday.
The defendants, who are going to be served through a substituted service include the General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu-Nketiah; Vida Addae, a Deputy Treasurer; Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, NDC Director of Elections and Dr. Karl Mark-Arhin, whose appointment to the Electoral Commission’s controversial Steering Committee stoked heated political debate.
The rest are Mahdi Gibril, who ran errands for the party during the Presidential Election Petition at the Supreme Court in 2013 as well as Emmanuel S. Zumakpe, Director of Administration for the party.
The court order, signed by Stephen Afotey, the Registrar, indicated, “It is hereby ordered that the Writ of Summons and Statement of Claim with the order of substituted service be served on the defendants” by pasting copies in places like the Notice Board of the Law Court Complex, Accra, as well as pasting copies on the walls of the NDC Headquarters situated on Adama Street, Adabraka, Accra.
The court also ordered the plaintiff to serve the process on “any adult inmate found at the secretariat of the NDC, as well as deliver the process “to any security man found at the NDC Headquarters gate at Adabraka, preferably Victor K. Boampong, Kofi Forson or John Agbesi Mawuena.”
In the statement of claim, the beleaguered accountant revealed how the ruling party paid a whopping GH¢5,544,630 to the EC without receipts.
Giving details of the payments to the EC, the accountant said there were different cheques he withdrew together with Mr. Asiedu Nkeatia on different dates at Societe Generale, Accra Main on behalf of the EC, although he admitted, “I am not a signatory to the NDC account.”
“The first cheque was GH¢630,000; the second cheque was GH¢357,000; the third cheque was GH¢2 million then followed by GH¢2.199, 340, then GH¢69,315; GH¢54,975; GH¢140,000 and GH¢100,000 - totaling GH¢5.544,630,” he revealed.
He wants damages for loss of leave for 23 years and loss of gross salary at GH¢3,574.50 per month multiplied by 3 months in lieu of notice.
“The plaintiff states that his salary of GH¢3,574.50 x 23 years x 2 will come to GH¢164,427.00 plus the pay for 3 months which is GH¢3,574.50 x 3 his entire loss incomes to GH¢175,150.50 excluding his leave allowance for the 23 years.
“The EC delegated two people- a man and a woman - with a huge van and collected the gargantuan cash of GH¢5,544,630.00 and as of 5th February, 2016, the 2nd Defendant (Asiedu Nketia) has still not accounted for the paid cash,” Mathias Wilson made the claims in court documents he filed against his unlawful dismissal.
The EC reportedly demanded physical cash instead of a cheque and the NDC, after cashing the cheques, put the GH¢5,544,630.00 in a van and handed it over to two EC staff for onward transmission to the Commission.
Cheques Vrs Cash
He averred, however, that the Commission rejected the cheque with the excuse that “the Electoral Commission does not accept cheques but cash.”
Mr Wilson claimed that when the EC rejected the cheque Mr Asiedu Nketia subsequently sent him to the bank for the money.
“The bank manager informed the Plaintiff that the cash was so much to be paid over the counter and so she will make payment orders to the Electoral Commission of Ghana. Asiedu Nketia, the 2nd Defendant, said ‘No’ and that they needed cash so the Plaintiff decided to issue two cheque payment vouchers on 7th December, 2015 for GH¢2,000,000.00 and the other one on the same 7th December , 2015 for GH¢2,199,340.00 which the said vouchers, according to the 2nd Defendant, were received by Gyanu Edgar, an employee of the Electoral Commission,” Plaintiff averred.