An Accra High Court has set July 22, 2020, to hold case management conference in the defamation suit brought against General Secretary of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia by the Chairman of the Audit Service Board, Prof. Edward Dua Agyeman.
This was after the parties in the matter have filed their statements of case as well witness statements, as directed by the court, presided over by Justice Stephen Oppong.
The case management conference sets down the rules of the trial which includes time management – how long a witness would be cross-examined by opposing counsels among others.
Meanwhile, Gary Nimako Marfo who is the lawyer representing Prof. Dua Agyeman has complained to the court about Mr. Asiedu Nketia’s persistent absence from the proceedings since the commencement of the case.
Former Auditor General, Prof. Edward Dua Agyeman, who is now the board chairman of the Audit Service dragged Asiedu Nketia to court demanding GH?20 million over comments he made on radio intended to damage his reputation.
The NDC scribe popularly known as General Mosquito has been accused of making slanderous statements against Prof. Dua Agyeman that he was fond of churning out fake audit reports based on which he was sacked by accountants association.
Prof. Dua Agyeman in his writ avers that without basis or probable cause Asiedu Nketia “ostensibly sought to impugn the integrity, dignity, and reputation of the Plaintiff and to ridicule him in the eyes of right-thinking members of society”.
The plaintiff indicates that Asiedu Nketia on October 2, 2018, made some unsubstantiated and disparaging statements on Accra based radio station, Neat Fm accusing him of producing fake audit accounts in 1983 while he was at the Audit Service leading to his dismissal.
But the former Auditor General took exception to the comments, saying it has generated several comments and media attention in Ghana and abroad ostensibly to tarnish his hard-won reputation.
Contrary to claim by Asiedu Nketia, Prof Dua Agyeman avers that a letter authored by Prof Kwame Adom-Frimpong, President of Institute of Chartered Accountants (Ghana) Council (ICAG) dated 15th October 2018 shows that he has been in good standing since 1978 and has never been banned.
Asiedu Nketia failed on two attempts to get the case dismissed by filing applications before the court.
The first application urged the court to dismiss the suit because it cannot rely on the English translations of the comments he made in the local Twi dialect.
But the court then presided over by Justice Sophia Bernasko-Essah dismissed the application and directed the plaintiff to amend his case to include the original comments which were made in the Twi language.
The second one also prayed the court to dismiss the suit on grounds that the plaintiff did not follow the orders of the court in amending his statement of case but it was also dismissed.