Court Orders Mental Test For Axim In MASLOC Trial

Daniel Axim

The trial of former Chief Executive Officer of Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC), Sedina Tamakloe Attionu, has taken an unexpected twist as her co-accused, Daniel Axim has been ordered to undergo psychiatric examination.

The two are before the court for allegedly stealing a total of GH¢3,198,280 while at MASLOC, and willfully caused a GH¢1,973,780 financial loss to the state.

Daniel Axim, a former Operations Manager of MASLOC, was expected to open his defence but his lawyer, Augustines Obour questioned his client’s mental capability to stand trial.

He said the accused had already seen a psychiatrist at the Accra Psychiatric Hospital, but the hospital demanded that it will only release the report upon a request by the court.

Justice Afia Serwa Asare-Botwe, a Court of Appeal judge sitting as an additional High Court judge, stated that what the lawyer and the accused did was not known to the law as it was the court that has to order the test in the first place.

Mr. Obour told the court that it was difficult to consult with Mr. Axim, the reason he had not been able to attach any exhibits to the witness statement filed on his behalf.

“What you are saying is strange to the law and you know it. What you are doing is not what the law says. It is not your job. Let us do what the law says,” Justice Asare-Botwe stated, adding that even if the lawyer had obtained the report on his own the court could not have used it for anything.

She said she will not do anything to jeopardise the accused, indicating that anyone in Mr. Axim’s position would be stressed having been through a trial that has lasted for four years.

She, however, added that as to whether that stress is enough for him to be unfit to stand trial is another thing.

Stella Ohene Appiah, a Principal State Attorney at the Office of the Attorney General, expressed concern about the turn of events, stating that her only concern was that others may take advantage of things and go procure their own reports about their client’s mental ability to stand trial.

Justice Asare observed that Mr. Axim has not shown any eratic indication he is of unsound mind, except on one occasion when he went to sit in a different court for a long period.

She, however, ordered the accused who is said to to be under medical treatment and care of Dr. Apio of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital to be examined and the report on him filed before the court by November 20, 2023.

The doctor is to appear before the court on November 27, 2023, to testify as to whether Mr. Axim is fit to stand trial.


Ms. Attionu and Mr. Axim are facing 80 counts of conspiracy, stealing, unauthorised commitment resulting in a financial obligation for the government, improper payment, money laundering and contravention of the Public Procurement Act.

Again, Ms. Attionu and her accomplice, according to the facts, while in charge at MASLOC made unauthorised commitments resulting in financial obligations for the government to the tune of GH¢61,735,832.50.

The charges against the two also include GH¢22,158,118.85 loss to public property and improper payment of GH¢273,743.66 as well as money laundering of GH¢3,704,380.

BY Gibril Abdul Razak