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Sick Beige Bank boss gets bail

BY MUNTALLA INUSAH   |    muntalla.inusah@dailyheritage.com.gh


THE ACCRA Circuit Court presided over by Justice Emmanuel Essandoh, now Justice of the High Court, has granted the Chief Executive Officer of the defunct Beige Bank, Mike Nyinaku, bail in the sum of GHc352 million.

Apart from that, he is to produce two sureties who are public servants earning not less than GHc 2,000.00.

The accused is also to deposit his passport with the registrar of the court and notify the court in writing anytime he needs to travel.

He is also ordered to report to the police CID twice a week, on Monday and Friday.

Sickness

Prior to the hearing of the bail application, the prosecution, led by ASP Ebenezer Nyamekye, told the court presided over by Justice Essandoh that the accused was on admission at the Police Hospital after he was taken ill.

On January 14, when he was first arraigned the embattled businessman was charged with two counts of offence of stealing and money laundering, which he denied.

But a bail application advanced by his lawyer, Baffour Ashia Bonsu, holding Thaddeus Sory’s brief, was refused on the ground that the lawyer did not convince the Court that should his client be granted bail, he would avail himself to stand trial.

Charges

The Managing Director of The Beige Bank, which is in receivership, Michael Nyinaku, has been charged with two counts of stealing contrary to section 124 (1) of the Criminal and Other Offences Act 1969 (Act 29) as amended by part 4 of ( NLCD) No. 398/69 and Money Laundering contrary to section 1(1)(a) of the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2008 (Act 749).

Facts of case

Per the brief facts presented to the court by ASP Ebenezer Nyamekye were that “The Beige Group (TBG), a subsidiary entity to the Beige Bank, in the latter part of the year 2017 had deliberations with the leadership of First African Savings and Loans (FASL) to acquire 90% equity shares in the savings and loans entity. The value of the 90% shares was USS2.5 million. The discussions led to the preparation of various documentations to formalize the purchase process.”

“TBG eventually paid GHc9million as part-payment of the equity shares intended to be purchased. This was captured in the letter captioned, ‘Re-Capitalization of First African Savings and Loans Limited,’ written by the Managing Director of FASL, Hon. Gifty Affenyi Dadzie (Mrs.) to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of TBG, Michael Nyinaku. The two (2) companies agreed that FASL leadership should send a write-up to Bank of Ghana (BoG), the regulator, to regularize the agreement.”

The facts sheet further stated that “TBG deployed Vanessa Akorfa Atsu to serve as a Responsibility Officer, to propagate the Beige culture within the confines of the FASL setup at the Headquarters of the entity at Circle-Accra. Some employees of TBG, including Winfred Kwaku Sefogah, Vivian Amponsah, Daniel Debrah, and Jasmine Agyemang, were sent to the Circle Head Office, Makola, Awoshie, and Kasoa offices of FASL to work in the interest of TBG. As was the practice, FASL, being a subsidiary, was made to open an account with The Beige Bank (TBB)”.

The account, christened FASL Operational Account, numbered 038152041412, was opened in November, 2017 and it had Gifty Affenyi Dadzie, and Kwabena Osei Bonsu, the General Manager of FASL, as signatories representing FASL, and Vanessa Akorfa Atsu and Yvonne Phillips serving as signatories for TBG. At the time TBG went into receivership this account contained about GHc 12 million, which was known to the MD of FASL Mrs. Gifty Afenyi Dadzie”.

“Unknown to the authorities of FASL, TBG secretly opened a second account in the name of FASL, known as the control account, with account number 0381520414122, which had an outstanding balance of GHc 299 Million at the time TBB went into receivership. The account was opened by Susannah Philips. This account had suspects, Vanessa Akorfa Atsu, Yvonne Phillips, and Yiadom–Boakye Augustine, all from TBG, as its signatories though the account was opened in the name of FASL”.

The account, according to Prosecution, is said to have had funds close to GHc 340.94 million in it initially but some of the monies totalling GHc 21,123,270.96 were transferred to affiliate entities of TBG and others, including Beige Capital Ltd, an amount of GH2.2 Million; Beige Care, GHC392,000.00; Beige Academy, an GHC250,000.00; Beige Assure, GHC627,000.00; Beventure, GH@1,740,000.00; Legacy Pensions GHC427,000.00; Bidvest Micro Finance, GHc 3,142,270.96; DYI Ltd, an amount of GHC6 Million; Adelia Ltd,  GHc 1,010.000.00; Albery, GHC5,240,000.00; Nana Afia Evelyn Kyei GHc 80,000.00; and Godwin Nordjo GHCI5,000.00.

“The withdrawals from the false FASL account were at the behest of suspect Michael Nyinaku, through suspects Yvonne Nana Etruba Phillips, and Yiadom Boakye Augustine, who co-signed the documents instructing transfer of funds from the false FASIL accounts to the beneficiaries.

One such request, the facts says, “was made to the Consolidated Bank Ghana on August 8, 2018 and the amount to be transferred was GHc38, 101,095.89 from the false FASL account into Beige Capital Asset Management Limited account number 001078031121 situate at the Head Office.

“The leadership of FASL’s attention was drawn on the transfer request and they denied it and even challenged the amount in question which far exceeded what they had in their accounts. Investigations disclosed that the false second FASL account was created without the consent of FASL authorities and transactions took place on it without their knowledge”.

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