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'We were paid for work done'-Assibit

Accra, July 26, GNA – Philip Akpeena Assibit a representative of Goodwill International Group (GIG) on Wednesday told the Financial Division of the High Court that his company was entitled to all the payments made to it by the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Development Agency (GYEEDA.

He said the company was not only paid because, they made request to the NYEP or someone recommended them to be paid but because they have performed an activity, which warranted the payments.

Mr Assibit one of the accused in case, who was continuing his evidence in chief said ‘so we were paid for work done and we deserve the payments.’

Mr Abuga Pele, the former National Co-ordinator of GYEEDA and Mr Assibit, a representative of Goodwill International Group (GIG), are facing various charges of causing financial loss of 4.1 million Ghana Cedis to the State.

Assibit is accused of putting in false claims that he had secured a 65-million-dollar World Bank funding for the creation of one million jobs for the youth of this country, which led the government to part with GH¢ 4.1 million.

He said the company pre-financed the implementation of activities before the NYEP reimbursed them.

Mr Assibit told the court that the World Bank Project as mentioned by an earlier witnesses in the case was a bi-product of their initial project proposal to the NYEP, adding that through preliminary works in terms of the feasibility of potential funding to support the youth employment in Ghana, they identified the World Bank as one of the several sources of funding.

‘The issue of the World Bank funding was not part of our initial engagement with the NYEP, it was in a meeting to present out report for work done that the World Bank’s name came into the picture,’ he added.

He said the World Bank project was not part of the bases for the budget prepared and for payments made, it only benefitted from the results of the NYEP’s youth enterprise development programme.

When asked, what exactly the Company did in connection with the World Bank’s $65 million facility, the accused said the company structured the youth enterprise development programme document into a proposal for the World Bank, the company was later requested to reduce the proposal into a concept note, after which they were told that the World Bank had accepted to support the project.

Mr Assibit said they were requested to conduct a tracer study, which was done and submitted through a report.

He said because the drafting of the proposal for the World Bank, which was not part of their engagement, the company did not charge the NYEP.

On June 19, 2015 the Court ordered Philip and Pele to open their defence in respect of a GH¢4.1 million malfeasance case against them.

The order came after the Court had ruled that the State had established a prima facie case against the two, in respect of 19 counts of defrauding by false pretences, abetment of crime, dishonesty and intentionally misapplying public funds and wilfully causing financial loss to the State.

GNA

By Morkporkpor Anku, GNA