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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Yankey, others not cleared yet – Emile Short

Mr Emile Short, CHRAJ Commissioner
Mr Emile Short, CHRAJ Commissioner

The Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) says media publications suggesting that former Health Minister, Dr. Sipa Yankey, has been exonerated in the Mabey and Johnson bribery scandal are inaccurate.

CHRAJ Commissioner Emile Short says nothing in the investigations so far supports such claims by Dr Yankey’s lawyer.

Speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show, Kwame Gyan explained that a procedural error in the case in which his client is implicated.

Lawyers for Dr Yankey – who resigned to clear his name in scandal – say they have sought the opinion of a legal team in the UK who suggest Dr Yankey was unfairly treated.

“The proceedings, as they were conducted and in so far as it relates to Dr Sipa Yankey, had very grave errors, particularly in view of the provisions of the code of conduct for barristers which places serious restrictions on the disclosures of the identities and names of persons who are not before the court as parties to the proceedings,” Mr Gyan said.

However Mr Short said that whilst Dr Yankey “is entitled to seek legal opinion from any quarters,” investigations by CHRAJ into the matter – “will be based on the allegations and the admissions made by the company (Mabey & Johnson) in the UK proceedings that there was a fund called the Development Fund and out of this fund monies were paid to the officials mentioned.”

The CHRAJ Commissioner said explanations by Dr Yankey and other officials mentioned in the scandal “will be considered during a formal hearing” which the Commission has yet to undertake.

“It’s a question of the Commission looking at these explanations or these defenses and looking at the evidence in support of these defenses,” Mr Short indicated.

Asked whether the commission has established a prima facie case, Mr Short said “well even if we have I wouldn’t tell you,” adding “that’s a matter I’ll keep close to my chest.”

The CHRAJ investigation follows a ruling by a UK court that Dr Yankey and several other former government officials took bribes from UK-based company, Mabey & Johnson.

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