Front Page: April 26, 2008.
Story: Albert K. Salia
THE Kojo Armah Committee set up to investigate the missing cocaine at the Exhibits Store at the CID Headquarters has recommended the prosecution of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Patrick Akagbo.
It said although the committee could not pinpoint any single person or group of persons who had substituted the cocaine, DSP Akagbo, who kept the keys to the store, should be held responsible for dereliction of duty.
It also recommended further investigations into the conduct of Chief Superintendent Alphonse Adu-Amankwah, the former Head of the erstwhile Organised Crime Unit, in his administration of the unit, especially with the arrest, transportation and handling of the exhibits which were intercepted at Prampram in the Greater Accra Region.
Giving highlights of the committee’s report yesterday during its presentation to the Interior Minister, Mr Kwamena Bartels, the Chairman, Mr Kojo Armah, said the committee also recommended the re-organisation of the CID Headquarters, especially its records management.
He said the committee took both oral and written evidence from 43 people, including the Inspector-General of Police, Mr P. K. Acheampong; the former Director-General of the CID, Mr David Asante-Apeatu; his successor, Mr Frank Adu-Poku, Chief Supt Adu-Amankwah, DSP Akagbo and five civilians.
He said the committee established that there were personality clashes between Chief Supt Adu-Amankwah and DCOP Asante-Apeatu, at one level, and between DCOP Asante-Apeatu and the IGP at another level.
He said those clashes affected the management of the CID Headquarters, resulting in non-coordination of issues there.
According to the chairman, that made Chief Supt Adu-Amankwah do “his own thing” as Head of the Organised Crime Unit.
Mr Armah said the committee traced the source of the conflicts to the handling of the East Legon cocaine case in 2005, adding that it resulted in the keys to the Exhibits Store being given to DSP Akagbo, who had nothing to do with Organised Crime.
He said the committee detected that the doors to the store had neither been forced open nor had there been a break in.
Mr Armah, therefore, said there was little possibility of someone entering the Exhibits Store through the back window, hence the decision to hold DSP Akagbo liable.
According to him, three civilians — Isaac Tenkorang, Osman Anani and Nana Dokua — had led the committee into believing that DSP Akagbo had actually taken the cocaine and given it to Mr Kwame Frempong to sell but added that Tenkorang later confessed to the committee that they had actually conspired to implicate DSP Akagbo and Mr Frempong.
He explained that based on that, the committee had no option but release Mr Frempong.
He said record keeping at the CID Headquarters was very poor, as the officers did not keep details of all visitors and other details.
Mr Armah commended all the personalities and institutions that assisted the committee in its work, especially the IGP, the Bureau of National Investigations and the Narcotics Control Board.
Mr Bartels, for his part, expressed the government’s gratitude to members of the committee for accepting the responsibility.
He said the report would be forwarded to the Attorney-General’s Department for advice, after which the government would issue a statement on it.
He pledged that all those who had been recommended for prosecution would be dealt with.
Mr Bartels, who was flanked by the Minister of State at the ministry, Nana Obiri Boahen, said the government would use the report to streamline the weaknesses in the housing and custody of exhibits in future.