African court orders Ghana to suspend retrieval of GHC51.2m from Woyome

Alfred Woyome

The Tanzania-based African Court on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR) has ordered Ghana to suspend all efforts to retrieve the GHC51.2 million judgement debt paid to businessman, Mr Alfred Agbesi Woyome, until the court determines an appeal filed by the businessman.

In a unanimous ruling on November 24, 2017, the 11-member panel ordered Ghana to suspend the seizure of any property belonging to the businessman, “take all appropriate measures to maintain the status quo and avoid the property being sold’’ until the case was determined.

The ACHPR further ordered Ghana to report to it within 15 days “from the date of receipt of this order on measures taken to implement this order’’.

Woyome’s case

On January 16, 2017, Mr Woyome filed an application at the ACHPR in response to the Supreme Court’s judgement on July 29, 2014 that ordered him to pay the GHC51.2 million on the grounds that he got the money out of unconstitutional and invalid contracts between the state and Waterville Holdings Limited in 2006 for the construction of stadia for CAN 2008.

He alleged in his application that Ghana did not respect the terms of the agreement that governed the financial engineering role he played in the transaction and as such his rights and freedoms recognized under the ACHPR Charter had been violated.

He followed the substantive application with another application on July 4, 2017, praying the ACHPR to halt all processes seeking to execute the Supreme Court’s July 29, 2014 judgement until his case was determined by the ACHPR.