Kow Essuman, legal representative of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has refuted claims that he threatened to sue Doha-based media firm Al Jazeera for some reference made to the president in their Gold Mafia documentary.
In an X response made to a post by an aide to former President John Dramani Mahama, Joyce Bawa Mogtari, the president’s lawyer described the claim as a lie being repeated by members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
“Senior, respectfully, I will be happy to respond to your post, fraught with falsities to say the least, when you show me where I stated emphatically that I was going to sue Al Jazeera on behalf of my employer. This lie has been peddled by the NDC robots on this platform severally but for it to come from you, my older, respected sister and senior at the Bar, leaves me wondering,” the president’s lawyer wrote.
In an opinion addressed to the president’s lawyer on X, Madam Mogtari questioned his understanding of a 24-hour economy policy announced by former President Mahama who is the NDC’s 2024 flagbearer.
While seeking to explain the policy as crucial in turning the Ghanaian economy around, Bawa Mogtari raised questions for the president’s lawyer including when he intends to sue the news media for the reference to the president in their documentary.
In the Gold Mafia expose, a businessman, Alistair Mathias claimed to have done gold business in Ghana and that President Nana Akufo-Addo was his lawyer.
In a correspondence with the news outlet, the government of Ghana demanded an unqualified apology from the media network.
However, the president through correspondence with Al Jazeera refuted recollection of any such interaction with Alistair while describing the documentary as malicious and thus demanded a retraction and an apology..
Read Joyce Bawa Mogtari’s statement and the presidenc’s letter to Al Jazeera below:
“However my idea of a 24 hour economy goes beyond just a night economy to boost tourism as explained by the honourable Ken Ofori Atta.
I envision a 24 hour economy where hospitality facilities, filling stations, manufacturers, extractive industries, agro processing, ports, financial services, digital start ups,
BPOs etc will operate preferably a three shift system 24/7 in an atmosphere of safety and security.
Heightened security needed to implement the 24 hour
economy will provide for safer cities and thereby boost tourism.”
This is what HE John Dramani Mahama said about the importance of the 24 hour Economy to job creation and economic prosperity!
let me state for the record, that John Mahama will be sworn into office Insha Allah and that the many experts we have including the TUC- Ghana will roll up their sleeves to offer full support for the implementation of this policy. It will indeed be the game changer to the glory of God!
The NDC will introduce regulations, well crafted incentives,enhanced safety and security measures and a sustainable framework to motivate innovation and encourage more participation by both public and private sector companies willing to sign onto this new policy.
This will create critical jobs for our brothers and sisters.
Counsel , you and I are not the only repositories of knowledge and irrespective of our politics and partisanship we ought to show objectivity and honesty as individuals!
The TUC-Ghana has described the policy as a game changer and many well placed individual’s who love Ghana have welcomed the idea and agree that if well implemented it will boost the economy and create essential jobs in a country struggling with staggering unemployment!
But of course what do you care!
In the UK and US, and other more robust economies, cleaning companies work 24 hour shifts, Road Maintenance Companies work 24hour shifts, Call centers and emergency services are on call 24 hours and that makes a huge difference and you know that!
My Brother, at this point in time myself like many other individuals expect you to show more decorum and humility as well as respect for others and especially those who mean well for this country!
Those who are affected by unemployment know that there are some young people who have not been able to secure a decent job or a decent wage and for that category a sustainable 24 hour work life could be the game changer.
1. Do well to tell us why you have still not carried out your threat to sue Al Jazeera for calling out your Employer for corruption.
2. Why the government in which you serve now has failed to perform
3. Failed to deliver on the fight against corruption,
4. Failed to Fix the economy
5. Failed to Arrest the Cedi ( whatever that means)
6. Failed to deliver 88 hospitals or is it 115
7. Failed to make Accra the cleanest city( that effort has potential to create more jobs in the cleaning industry)
8. Failed to move from taxation to production
9. Failed in Protecting the public purse and now literally ‘raping’ everyone including the public purse
10.failing abysmally and yet in 8 years you still assume that we are not discerning enough and actually still doing the exact same things you did prior to winning power and expecting different results.
11. You forget that the Accra Digital Center was conceived of and birthed by HE John Mahama and implemented by the Former Communications Minister, Dr Edward Omane Boamah. Yes a business model like that is capable of creating data processing jobs for export markets and should be able to operate 24 hours, creating more opportunities for our youth.
REQUEST FOR RETRACTION AND APOLOGY FOR INACCURATE AND UNFAIR DOCUMENTARY ON THE PRESIDENT AND GOVERNMENT OF GHANA
I am instructed by the President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to demand formally that Al Jazeera Media Network (“Al Jazeera”) retract immediately and apologise for airing an inaccurate and unfair documentary that contained spurious and unsubstantiated allegations against the President and the Government of Ghana.
The documentary in question made baseless claims that the President acted as a lawyer for one Mr. Alistair Mathias and implied that the President personally benefitted unlawfully from an alleged $100m state infrastructure contract purportedly awarded to Mr. Mathias. In his letter dated 11th April, 2023, responding to Al Jazeera’s letter of 2nd April, 2023, which was received on April, 2023, containing these vague and defamatory allegations, the Legal Counsel to the President, Mr. Kow Abaka Essuman, acting on the instructions of the President, informed Al Jazeera that the President had not been in private practice since the year 2000 and that the President had no recollection of acting as a lawyer, either personally or through his law firm, Messrs. Akufo-Addo, Prempeh and Co, for a Mr. Alistair Mathias or his company, Guldrest Resources.
In those circumstances, further and better particulars were demanded from Al Jazeera to respond adequately to the allegations made in Al Jazeera’s letter. Al Jazeera was thus requested to provide information on the period for which the President allegedly provided legal representation to Mr. Alistair Mathias or his company, Guldrest Resources. Furthermore, Al Jazeera was requested to provide details of the “USD 100 million tender for state infrastructure”, allegedly given to Mr. Mathias, which he outsourced and kept a percentage in offshore accounts, as stated in the letter as well as information on how the President personally benefited unlawfully from the alleged “USD 100 million tender for state infrastructure.”
Al Jazeera refused or failed to provide these details as requested and went ahead with the broadcast of the documentary. At the end of the documentary, a terse text was shown, contradicting the content of the documentary. Additionally, the subject of the documentary, Mr. Alistair Mathias, denied what he said in the documentary to Al Jazeera’s investigative journalist. In light of these blatant denials by Mr. Alistair Mathias and the response from Mr. Essuman, those parts of the documentary ought not to have been included because those statements were not true.
Accordingly, those parts of the documentary are malicious, defamatory, and a calculated attempt to tarnish the reputation of the President and Government of Ghana. It is therefore demanded that Al Jazeera withdraws the documentary immediately, retracts and apologises to the President and the Government of Ghana for airing such an unprofessional and defamatory documentary.
It is imperative that you act forthwith on this request within seven (7) days from the date of receipt of this letter.
Please confirm receipt of this letter and your intention to take the necessary action as requested.
Nana Bediatuo Asante
Secretary to the President