Ato Forson pleads not guilty to charge of causing €2.3m financial loss to the state

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Dr Cassiel Ato Forson (middle) with one of his lawyers, Godwin Kudzo Tamakloe (right) and the NDC MP for Cape Coast South, Mr Kweku Ricketts Hagan

Former Deputy Finance Minister, Cassiel Ato Forson, has pleaded not guilty to the charge of causing a €2.3 million loss to the state.

Two other accused persons, Sylvestre Anemana, a former Chief Director at the Ministry of Health and Richard Jakpa, a businessman, also pleaded not guilty.

They were all granted bail in sums totalling ¢8 million.

The case relates to the procurement of some 200 ambulances by the Prof John Evans Atta Mills and John Mahama governments.

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Documents filed by the AG’s office traces the events culminating into the alleged crimes from a 2009 announcement during a State of the Nation Address of plans to procure ambulances for the country.

The AG says following this address, the Ministry of Health (MOH) initiated action to acquire more ambulances.

The third accused person, Richard Jakpa, is said to have used his company Jakpa at Business, to present a proposal and term loan to the Health Ministry, which he claimed to have arranged from Stanbic Bank to finance the supply of 200 ambulances to the government.

According to the AG, Cabinet endorsed an Executive approval for the project.

Mr Forson, after pleading not guilty, was granted self recognizance bail in the sum of ¢3 million.

The second accused person was granted bail of ¢1 million, while the third accused was granted bail of ¢5 million.

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