IN A desperate move to ensure that his HIV scare story was not discussed on air, Afrifa Yamoah Ponkoh, a leading member of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), last Friday reportedly called and pleaded with a number of radio stations in Kumasi not to review DAILY GUIDE, the paper which carried the story.
Further reports indicates that the newly-appointed Ashanti regional manager of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) also reportedly pleaded with some top radio stations in Accra and other parts of the country not to review DAILY GUIDE on their networks, even though some of the stations did.
Luckily for the former Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Kwabibrem football clubs’ official, there was no newspaper review in Kumasi on Friday due to the late arrival of the newspapers, owing to the accident which occurred on the Accra-Kumasi main road that day.
Wofa Yamoah, as he is fondly called, according to reports, went berserk when he had information that DAILY GUIDE had given prominence to his HIV scandal and therefore resorted to calling and pleading with radio stations not to review the story on their network.
“I was at the studio early Friday morning when Wofa Yamoah called in and pleaded with us not to review DAILY GUIDE because they have carried a serious story about him,” one producer of a popular radio station in Kumasi told the paper on phone.
DAILY GUIDE, in its last Friday edition, published a story captioned “HIV Scandal Hits Yamoah Ponkoh”. In the said story, a certain Mariam Asante, a 27-year old trader, alleged that the NDC guru had infected her with the HIV virus.
According to her, she had tested positive for HIV I virus at four different hospitals in Accra after she had had four rounds of unprotected sex with the former communications director of the Reformed Patriotic Democrats (RPD).
Mariam claimed that Wofa Yamoah met her in Accra this year and promised to marry her and therefore had four rounds of unprotected sex with her on two occasions at a hotel and another at his residence.
She disclosed that before engaging in the unprotected sex escapades with the outspoken NDC bigwig, she had undergone an HIV test and was declared negative, but started developing some rashes on her skin after her sexual adventure with Wofa Yamoah and therefore decided to go for another test.
The 27-year-old trader said tests she conducted at four accredited hospitals in Accra, including the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Police Hospital and Top Herbal Center, confirmed that she had been infected with HIV virus I.
Mariam claimed that when she informed Wofa Yamoah Ponkoh that she had tested positive for HIV I so he should go to a hospital and have a test conducted for his status to be known, he refused, but promised to foot her medical bills and that she should be silent on the issue.
Speaking to DAILY GUIDE in a telephone interview, Wofa Yamoah debunked the story, saying it was the machination of his detractors who are not enthused about his new appointment.
He said his opponents were deliberately concocting the story, with the view of letting him lose focus on his new job so that they could have the platform to denigrate him, President Atta Mills and the NDC government.
According to him, the timing of the scandal clearly showed that his detractors were at work and were ready to do everything possible to destroy him, by causing public disaffection for his good self.
However, reports reaching the paper indicate that the new Ashanti regional NHIS boss would be addressing a press conference in Kumasi today, as part of efforts geared towards redeeming his soiled image.
From Morgan Owusu, Kumasi
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
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