The High Court in Accra has given a lifeline to the founder of the defunct Capital Bank, William Ato Essien to pay the remaining balance of ₵55 million to the State by July 4.

This was after Ato Essien, in his affidavit in opposition to the State’s motion to have him committed to prison, indicated steps his company Essien’s Swiss International Company has taken to liquidate some Assets with a third party company to mobilize funds.

Per the plan, he indicated that, the first of the funds said to be $300,000 is expected to be paid by June 30 and others that follow.

Ato Essien who has missed the April 28 deadline to pay the first installment of GHc20 million, has so far paid GHc5 million.

But, the Deputy Attorney General, Alfred Tuah Yeboah indicated to the court that per the law, the convict after reneging on that order, is to pay the remaining balance in full at once.

In Court on Wednesday, May 17, when the Prosecution led by Deputy Attorney General, Alfred Tuah Yeboah was to move the motion to commit him to prison, the court said, it was minded to grant Ato Essien more grace period saying, “I want to give you (Ato Essien) a lifeline.”

“I have perused through the application and the affidavit in opposition. If I were to allow the learned Deputy Attorney General to move the application I would be compelled to deliver my ruling in respect of the application,” Justice Eric Kyei Baffour, a Justice of the court of Appeal, sitting as an additional High Court judge stated.

He said, “Taking notice that the convict has taken steps to liquidate some assets in Essien’s Swiss international holdings for which he is the Sole Shareholder and is expecting huge sums of monies as he has indicated in the affidavit in opposition for which he has deposed to, if indeed the depositions in the affidavit have been made bonafide, time will vindicate that.”

Justice Eric Kyei Baffour, accordingly, said “I will hasten slowly and adjourn the application to July 4, 2023 to enable the convict redeem the money outstanding and as per the agreement with the Republic.”

The court said to the convict, “if indeed you need your freedom,” he should Honour the agreement before July 4.

According to EIB Network’s Legal Affairs Correspondent, Murtala Inusah, the motion to commit Ato Essien to prison would either be moved and determined by the court on July 4 or withdrawn depending on if Ato Essien pays the money or not.

Source: Inusah