The Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng has arraigned the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Juaben in the Ashanti Region before a High Court, Criminal Division in Kumasi over alleged bribery and corruption allegations.
The accused, Alexander Kwabena Sarfo-Kantanka, a farmer and Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the area has been charged with 26 counts by the Special Prosecutor in relation to his attempt to influence elections by bribing some 26 assembly members to vote for him to become the MCE but he was eventually rejected.
His charges per the charge sheet sighted by DGN Online include corruption in respect of public elections, contrary to section 256(1) and (2) of the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29) as amended by section 9 of the Criminal Offences (Amendment) Act, 2020 (Act 1034).
According to the facts of the case, in July 2021, the President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo nominated the accused, for the position of Chief Executive of the Juaben Municipal Assembly in the Ashanti Region.
The evidence will establish that, somehere in September the same year, prior to his confirmation by a public election, the accused person visited the members of the Juaben Municipal Assembly in Juaben; and he gifted the elected members of the Assembly Five Thousand cedis (GHC5,000) each and he also gifted the Government appointed members Two Thousand Five Hundred cedis (GHC2,500) each to influence their conduct in the performance of their duty as voters in respect of the election in his favour.
Subsequently, the election was conducted on September 29, 2021 and the accused failed to secure the required number of votes for confirmation as Municipal Chief Executive.
The accused was renominated for the same position by the President of the Republic on October 12, 2021.
A subsequent election for the same purpose was conducted on November 1, 2021 and the accused again failed to secure the required number of votes.
Whereupon, the accused, utterly disappointed at the turn of events that his gifting of valuable consideration to the members of the Assembly to influence their vote in his favour had gone awry, went berserk and vented his wrath on the members of the Assembly and he angrily demanded a refund of the amounts of money he had gifted to them.
The irate conduct of the accused was audio-visually recorded; and the recording went viral on social media platforms.
Shockingly, the accused admitted gifting the indicated sums of money to the respective categories of the members of the Assembly to influence the outcome of the elections in his favour.
After investigations, the accused was duly charged with the offences on the charge sheet.
Alexandre Safo Kantanka, was captured in a video demanding monies from some assembly members he alleged to have given in return for their votes after he was rejected for the second time.
He was also captured hurling insults and curses at some individuals believed to be Assembly members.
In some instances, he was seen angrily exchanging words with some assembly members.
He was subsequently picked up by the Police for questioning after the video went viral on November 2, 2021.
The Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng then served the MCE nominee summons to appear before him for questioning on Tuesday, November 9 as the Special Prosecutor commenced investigations into the allegations of corruption and corruption-related offences.
The Special Prosecutor in the letter said it “has commenced investigations into allegations of corruption and corruption-related offences (especially corruption and intimidation in respect of a public election) particularly in relation to your Alex Sarfo Kantanka’s nomination and confirmation or otherwise as the Municipal Chief Executive of Juaben Municipality in the Ashanti Region.”
By Vincent Kubi