Politics

Effutu NDC PC opens up on lying against Afenyo-Markin

The NDC Parliamentary Candidate for Effutu Constituency, Dr James Kofi Annan has called on the public to disregard a propaganda News item circulating on some online portals which reads “I lied against Afenyo-Markin- Effutu NDC Candidate begs”

According to him, the publication was made in compliance with a court order following a defamation suit against him by Afenyo-Markin which he appealed. James Annan added that while his appeal is still pending the court asked him to apologize to Afenyo-Markin claiming in a press conference that he suspected Afenyo-Markin was behind his arrest in 2019.

He explained that the whole case started when some people he never knew from anywhere before approached him to help fund his campaign. Dr. Annan stated that he initially rejected but persistence from the people made him accept. Once a cheque was issued to his bank account and he withdrew the money, the Winneba Police called and arrested him for illegally withdrawing money from one Benjamin Ackah’s account.

He added that the case has since been thrown out and the court acquitted him. However, he has sued Benjamin Ackah and the Police for GHS20 million

Read the statement by Dr James Kofi Annan

I HAVE NOT STATED ANYWHERE THAT I LIED AGAINST AFENYO-MARKIN

_ Writes James Kofi Annan

My attention has been drawn to a misleading newspaper headline, “I lied against Afenyo-Markin – Effutu NDC candidate begs”, recently circulating on various social media platforms. The said publication, which was done in 2023, is deliberately re-circulated without its content.

In the year 2019, some individuals contacted me to financially support my parliamentary bid. I did not know them from anywhere, and as a former banker, I knew the potential implications of receiving money from unknown sources, so I rejected the offer.

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However, these individuals persisted for over eight months and eventually got me to agree to accept the money in good faith since the individuals had demonstrated genuineness in wanting to help me financially.

Upon giving them my bank account details, they paid a cheque of GHC100,000 and alerted me to go for it.

The moment the money was withdrawn from my bank account, I had a call from the Winneba Police station that one Benjamin Ackah had lodged a criminal complaint against me, alleging that I had illegally withdrawn GHC100,000 from his bank account.

I was subsequently arrested, charged, and prosecuted, a prosecution that lasted almost two years. This case was widely reported in the media. My lawyers eventually succeeded in getting me acquitted and discharged.

During the trial, the CBG Bank exposed the complainant in court, that he the person who reported to the police that I had stolen his money from his bank account, was the very person who issued the payments in my favor, an obvious scheme to get me arrested, prosecuted, and jailed.

From how the entire scheme unfolded, and how suddenly media houses and NPP communicators flooded the police station when I was arrested, I was clear in my mind that a political opponent could be the one behind the whole plot to get me incriminated. I therefore stated in a press statement that I suspected Afenyo-Markin, my political opponent, to be behind the whole scheme. He sued me, claiming defamation.

The court granted his request and demanded that I apologize to him. I immediately filed an appeal, and requested for stay of execution, but the court insisted that I should retract and apologize first, so that if my appeal succeeds then I can retract my retraction and the apology.

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I was not satisfied with the judgment on the defamation suit, but I had to eventually go ahead and apologize and retract even though the appeal was pending in court, to purge myself of a contempt judgment he brought against me.

Therefore, kindly note, that, I only did what the court asked me to do without more, by apologizing and retracting the statement I made. I have not stated anywhere that I lied against Afenyo-Markin.

I have since the end of the trial sued the Ghana Police Service and the complainant, Benjamin Ackah, for GHC20million for malicious prosecution.

The appeal against the defamation judgment is still pending in court. I aim at arriving at a finality, that if a person states that “I suspect that you are causing me pain”, is that the same as “I know you are causing me pain”? I believe my pursuit of this case and its final judgment would help shape the subject of defamation and journalism in this country.

James Kofi Annan
(Effutu Parliamentary Candidate for the NDC)

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