Former MASLOC CEO Sedina Tamakloe, Pleads Not Guilty to 78 Counts of Criminal Charges

Former Chief Executive Officer of the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC), Sedina Christine Tamakloe Attionu, and the former Operations Manager of MASLOC, Daniel Axim, have both pleaded not guilty to seventy eight (78) counts of Stealing, Causing Financial Loss to the State, Causing Loss to Public Property, Improper Payment of Public Funds, Unauthorised Commitment Resulting in Financial Obligation for the Government, Money Laundering and Contravention of the Public Procurement Act.

First Appearance and Legal Representation of Accused Persons

The two accused persons made their first appearance before the Financial and Tax High Court two (2) presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, where their charges were read to them before their pleas were taken. The first accused person was represented in Court by Lawyer Agbesi Dzakpasu, and the second accused person by Lawyer Alfred Agyei Mensah.

The 1st accused person, Sedina Christine Tamakloe Attionu, was the Chief Executive Officer of the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC), a position she held from November, 2013 to January, 2017. The 2nd accused person, Daniel Axim, is the former Operations Manager at MASLOC. MASLOC is a government agency set up to assist small and medium scale businesses with low interest loans.

State Representation

The State was represented by the leader of the Bar and Attorney General of the Republic, Gloria Akuffo, the Deputy Attorney General, Joseph Dinkiok Kpemka, the Director of Public Prosecution, Yvonne Atakora Buabisa, and a Chief State Attorney, Evelyn Kelson.

Error on the Charge Sheet

While reading the charges to the hearing of the accused persons, it was noticed by the Court that the State in her numbering of the counts jumped from count forty eight (48) to fifty one (51). As a consequence, the counts were reduced to seventy eight (78) instead of eighty (80). Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe’s court, on the application by the Attorney General for leave to correct the numbering error, refused same indicating that the error does not have any serious effect on the substance of the case.

Bail Conditions

The two accused persons on the application of their lawyers were granted bail to the tune of 5 millions Ghana cedis with two sureties and 1 million Ghana cedis with one surety for the first and second accused persons respectively.

The sureties of the bail the Court ordered should not be persons who are ex-convicts or persons who are subjects of a criminal prosecution currently ongoing in any Court of law.

The two accused persons are to deposit their passports with the Registry of the court.

Case Management

The Court first ordered the Prosecution to ensure that within the next ten (10) days, they ensure that the defence team are served all necessary documents in order to prepare their defence.

Both parties together with the court settled on the 4th of March, 2019, as date for the next court sitting for the closed door case management proceedings to begin.

Former Appointees

Appointees of the former President John Dramani Mahama administration, such as former Attorney General, Marietta Brew Oppong; former Sports Minister, Elvis Afriyie Ankrah; former Attorney General, Betty Mould Iddrisu; and spokesperson for former President John Dramani Mahama, Joyce Bawah Mogtari, were in court to offer their support to their fellow appointee who is now the guest of the State.

By:Ghana/ Asare