An Accra High Court has sentenced former national Coordinator of GYEEDA Abuga Pele and former Chief Executive Officer of the now defunct unit of the Youth Employment Agency Philip Assibit to 6 and 12 years jail terms respectively for causing financial loss to the state.
The court presided over by Justice Afua Serwaa Asare Botwe Friday found both accused persons guilty of all the nineteen counts leveled against them by the prosecution.
On whether Mr. Asibit had secured $65 million funding from the World Bank as he claimed for which reason he demanded payment from the agency, the court ruled that per all documents before it from the World Bank, no such sums had been secured as at September 2011 when Mr Assibit wrote insisting he had secured that amount.
Assibit was again convicted on the charge of dishonestly causing financial loss to the state to the tune of GHC3.2 million or $1.9 million dollars.
The facts of the case, as presented by Mrs Keelson, were that in 2009, Pele, on assumption of office as the National Co-ordinator of the NYEP, entered into a contract with Assibit.
Under the terms of the agreement, the NYEP was described as the ‘host’, while the GIG was tagged as the ‘strategic partner’.
According to the prosecution, the parties agreed to combine their labour, properties and skills for the purpose of engaging in resource mobilisation, investor sourcing, management consulting, capacity building, career development, training services, among other jobs.
Per the agreement, the GIG was responsible for resource mobilisation and undertook to provide preliminary funds for the development of the programme, while the parties agreed to equally share the profits that would accrue out of the agreement.
“Meanwhile, there is nothing on record in terms of business proposals or documents forming the basis of engaging the GIG as a strategic partner,” the prosecution stated.
Assibit, between May 2011 and May 2012, “made a number of payment claims for consultancy services he claimed to have rendered to the NYEP, ranging from the provision of exit plan and strategy for all NYEP modules, established a Youth Enterprise Development Project which he claimed to have used in securing approval for a World Bank facility of $65 million for the NYEP and had recruited and trained 250 youth to support the implementation of what he referred to as the World Bank-funded Youth Enterprise Development Programme (YEDP),” it said.