General News of Friday, 21 July 2023
Former President John Dramani Mahama has reacted to news of the Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Dapaah, being robbed of over US$1 million, €300,000, and millions of Ghana Cedis in cash from her home.
In a tweet shared on Friday, the former president wondered why the minister and her family were keeping such an amount of money at her home.
Mahama, who is the presidential candidate of the NDC, added that this is an example of bad precedence being set by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
“$1m + €300k and millions of GHS in a Ghanaian Minister’s home? Scandalous!!
“Even if genuinely acquired, why keep millions of hard currency at home? Will @NAkufoAddo ever set a good example for public office holders in his administration?” Mahama asked.
Two house helps, 18-year-old Patience Botwe and 30-year-old Sarah Agyei, are currently facing charges before an Accra Circuit Court for their alleged involvement in the theft of significant sums of money and personal belongings belonging to Cecilia Abena Dapaah, Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources and her husband, Daniel Osei Kuffour.
According to a report by The Chronicle, the thefts, which amount to millions of Ghana Cedis, reportedly took place at the couple’s residence in Abelemkpe, a suburb of Accra, between July and October 2022.
The accused, Patience and Sarah, are facing one count of conspiracy to commit a crime and five counts of stealing, involving amounts of US$1 million, €300,000, and millions of Ghana Cedis.
During the same period, the pair allegedly stole personal effects from Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, including assorted clothes valued at GH¢95,000, handbags, perfumes, and jewelry valued at US$95,000.
Further accusations involve Patience acting alone to steal six pieces of Kente cloth worth GH¢90,000 and six sets of men’s suits valued at US$3,000, which belonged to the minister’s husband.
The court also charged three additional individuals in connection with the thefts.
Benjamin, a 29-year-old plumber, has been accused of dishonestly receiving GH¢180,000, while Kweku Botwe, a 65-year-old trader, faces charges for dishonestly receiving GH¢50,000. Additionally, Malik Dauda, a 23-year-old unemployed individual, is alleged to have dishonestly received GH¢1 million.
All five accused individuals appeared before an Accra Circuit Court presided over by Judge Susana Ekuful on Thursday, July 20, 2023. However, their pleas have not yet been taken.
Of the accused, Sarah has been granted bail in the sum of GH¢1 million, with two sureties required to deposit their Ghana cards with the court’s registrar.
It was clarified that the bail conditions are subject to review by the substantive judge as Judge Susana Ekuful was serving as a relief judge at the time.
In her briefing, Judge Susana Ekuful revealed that Patience, along with her alleged boyfriends and father, has been remanded into lawful custody. However, Sarah was granted bail due to being a breastfeeding mother.
According to the prosecution, Patience, also known as Maabena, previously worked as a house help for the complainants, Daniel Osei Kuffour and his wife, Cecilia Abena Dapaah. Sarah, too, was a former house help for the couple.
The alleged thefts came to light in June of the current year when the complainants reported the incidents to the police after discovering missing cash and personal belongings.
Patience was caught in the act, having opened and entered the couple’s room using a duplicate key. She was apprehended by Mr. Kuffour upon his return home, having noticed the room was unlocked and hearing unusual noises from inside.
Further investigations revealed the stolen items and the money in possession of Patience and her associates.
The accused allegedly used the stolen funds to finance various properties and purchases, including renting a 3-bedroom apartment and a store in Tamale, buying vehicles, and funding other personal expenses.
The court has adjourned the case to August 2, 2023, while investigations continue.
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