The Electoral Commission’s Chief Accountant says he is prepared to release a total of GHS432,000 in his custody if he is reinstated by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO).
The money, made up of separate amounts of GHS360,000 and GHS72,000, according to Kwaku Agyei-Larbi’s lawyers, was given to him for safekeeping “sometime in 2016” and has since been in his safe at the office.
He has not been able to release the amount to the EC because he has been on leave on the instructions of EOCO, the lawyers say in a statement.
Kwaku Agyei-Larbi, the Deputy Commissioner in charge of Finance and Administration, Georgina Amakwah as well as the Finance Officer Joseph Asamoah were interdicted by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) after initial investigations into the Commission’s staff welfare fund.
EOCO discovered that some GHS480,000 had gone missing and asked the three to proceed on leave pending investigations.
The investigations exonerated Agyei-Larbi, according to the lawyers, in relation to the welfare fund.
An amount of GHS360,000 that he received for safekeeping was later investigated by a five-member Committee constituted by the Chief Justice to investigate petitions for the removal from office of three of the top guns at the EC.
When subpoenaed to testify, he admitted receiving the money from Assistant Director, Electoral Service, Daniel Amenyor, adding that he kept it in a safe in his office.
In its recommendation after the investigations, the Chief Justice’s Committee asked that Agyei-Larbi “be made to pay to the Commission the amount of GHS360,000 he admitted had been in his custody in his office since 2016.
“If he is not able to pay the said amount to the EC we recommend that he is charged with stealing,” the report added.
But lawyers for Agyei-Larbi said their client can only make the money available if he is reinstated.