“Kpebu: OSP’s Mistake Acknowledged, Justification for Unfreezing Cecilia Dapaah’s Accounts by Court”

“Martin Kpebu, a private legal practitioner, has voiced criticism towards the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) for its handling of the application to freeze the bank accounts of former Sanitation Minister Cecilia Abena Dapaah. Following a search of Dapaah’s residences, the OSP sought to freeze her accounts, but Kpebu has questioned the OSP’s failure to provide detailed account information to the court.

However, an Accra High Court ruling on August 31 instructed the OSP to return the seized money within seven days and rescind its August 9 decision to freeze Dapaah’s accounts in both dollars and cedis. Speaking on Citi TV’s news analysis program, The Big Issue, Kpebu suggested that Special Prosecutor Kissi Adjebeng should have requested an in-camera hearing to share sensitive account details with the judge to protect the investigation’s confidentiality.

Kpebu disagreed with the court’s decision to return the money seized from Dapaah’s residence, stating that he believed the judge could have taken a different approach. He emphasized that it was essential to provide the court with necessary details when seeking such actions and criticized the OSP for not doing so.

Additionally, Kpebu advised the Special Prosecutor to consider reapplying for the freezing of the accounts instead of pursuing an appeal. He argued that presenting the statements to the judge would be a more effective strategy, and if the judge refused an in-camera hearing, an appeal to the Supreme Court could be considered.

Notably, the court recently overturned the OSP’s order to freeze Dapaah’s bank accounts at Société Générale and Prudential Bank. This followed the dismissal of an application to confirm the initial account freeze and seizure of funds found in Dapaah’s home. The court ruled that the application was filed out of time, a decision that aligned with Dapaah’s legal team’s argument, citing Section 32(2) of Act 959.

In response to the court’s directive, the OSP expressed respect for the decision but disagreed with it, asserting that it was based on erroneous grounds.”

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