GYEEDA scandal: Abuga Pele, Assibit jailed 18 years

An Accra High Court, Financial and Economic Division has convicted a former National Coordinator of the defunct Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Development Agency (GYEEDA) Mr. Abuga Pele and Mr. Philip Akpeena Assibit, a representative of the Goodwill International Group (GIG) to 6 and 12 years imprisonment respectively, after they were found guilty of causing financial loss to the state.

The presiding judge, Justice Efia Asare-Botwe in delivering her ruling stated that, the former National Coordinator of GYEEDA Mr. Pele will serve 6 years for abetment of crime and 4 years for causing financial loss to the state, while his accomplice Mr. Assibit on the other hand, will serve 3 years for dishonestly causing financial loss to the state and 12 years for defrauding by false pretence.

This brings the total number of years to be served by the duo to 18years as according to the court, the number of years to be served will run concurrently.

Today’s conviction comes after an Accra High Court found the two guilty on 19 counts including, dishonestly causing financial loss to the state.

In her ruling Justice Efia Asare-Botwe said, the Court was satisfied with the prosecution as the state Attorney, had proved 13 of the 19 counts Abuga Pele faced, ranging from aiding and abetting crime to willfully causing financial loss to the state.

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She also added that, the accused persons, failed to prove their innocence in the matter, hence their being pronounced to be guilty.

The conviction follows 4 years of legal battle at the High Court, where state prosecutors and defense lawyers for the accused put forward evidence to advance their claims.

While Abuga Pele had been charged with abetment of crime, intentionally misapplying public property and willfully causing financial loss to the state, Philip Assibit was facing charges of defrauding by false pretence and dishonestly causing financial loss.

The two men were alleged to have connived to defraud the state of some ¢4.1 million but they had pleaded not guilty to the charges leveled against them.

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