The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has arraigned seven staff of the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) before an Accra Circuit Court for securing jobs with forged certificates.
Two private businessmen, Richmond Ampah and Prince Yeboah-Kodie, are also before the court for forging certificates for some of the SSNIT employees, as well as forging National Service Certificates.
The seven persons allegedly secured jobs at SSNIT with the forged documents because of “illegal waivers of the recruitment and appointment procedures by the former Director-General of SSNIT, Ernest Thompson, who is before an Accra High Court, for causing financial loss to the state”.
They have been accused of possessing forged secondary school certificates, Diploma in Business Studies (DBS) certificates, as well as bachelor degrees from the University of Ghana and other private universities.
Sylvia Ama Boh, Brenda Bannerman, Joyce Abena Donkor, Susuana Okine, aka Tetteh Susuana, Eric Dzokoto, Javanael Anthony Asmah and Gbeney Lawrence are alleged to have used the forged certificates to secure jobs at SSNIT between 2013 and 2017.
They have been accused of causing financial loss to the state by receiving unjustified salaries of GH¢238,888.78.
The accused persons were handed over to EOCO for investigations after SSNIT, acting on information, conducted background checks.
The nine accused persons are facing a total of 28 charges, including possessing forged documents, conspiracy to forge official documents, forgery of documents and money laundering.
All the accused persons, except Joyce Abena Donkor and Javanel Anthony Asmah, were in court and pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Their lawyers prayed the court to grant them bail, saying they would appear before the court at all times.
The court, presided over by a relieving judge, Her Honour Afi Agbanu Kudormor, admitted them to bail in the sum of GH¢80,000.00 each, with two sureties.
They would reappear on August 21, 2018.
The court also issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Joyce Abena Donkor and Javanael Anthony Asmah, who failed to show up in court.
The court heard that Sylvia Ama Boh secured a job at SSNIT using a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Information Studies with Economics, Second Class Lower.
However, checks at the registrar’s office at the University of Ghana revealed that she actually graduated with Third Class.
Brenda Bannerman secured a job at SSNIT as Assistant Contact Centre Officer II with BA Degree in Psychology and Theatre Arts, Second Class Lower but investigations revealed that the certificate had been forged, as she did not fulfill the requirement for graduation.
Joyce Abena Donkor was also employed as Assistant Benefits Officer II with DBS but checks at the Technical Examination Unit of Ghana Education Service (GES) revealed that the certificate had been forged.
Susuana Okine, aka Tetteh Susuana, submitted a SSCE certificate from Peki Senior High School in the Volta Region, which turned out to be fake, to secure job at SSNIT as Assistant Accounts Officer.
Eric Dzokoto is also before the court for submitting a forged 1998 SSCE certificate to secure a job at SSNIT as an Assistant Accounts Officer II.
Javanael Anthony Asmah was also employed as Assistant Accounts Officer at one of the branches of SSNIT after presenting BA Business Administration in Banking and Finance certificate from Zenith University, which turned out to be fake.
Lawrence Gbeney, who was a driver at one of the branches of SSNIT, has been accused of inserting ‘Obuoba’ on his Junior High School (JHS) certificate to reflect Lawrence Gbeney Obuoba.