Alfred Woyome, the embattled businessman at the centre of the infamous GHS51 million judgement debt case says he has been receiving social and financial support from churches and mosques to survive.
Woyome, whose accounts and businesses have been frozen by the state, said in an interview on Citi TV that “the churches and sometimes the mosque feed me” adding that “they [also] contribute money.”
According to him, he also receives financial support from his external family and some philanthropists.
As his struggles against the state progressed, he said his shares in 14 companies have been frozen and his “hands tied” by the state and its actors.
“I have not worked. Government has closed all my businesses against a court order. Bank of Ghana had blacklisted me causing a huge contract I had to supply items to the government for the building of the port…and that thing was taken away.”
“My consultancy work, because of the criminal case and all the pursuant things, I couldn’t [consult] for any other country,” Mr. Woyome explained.
These circumstances have led Mr. Woyome to come to the conclusion that the state is not interested in the money.
“They don’t want me to pay. What they want to do is to render Mr. Woyome useless for challenging the status quo.”
The Supreme Court, on July 29, 2014, ordered Mr Woyome to refund GHS51.2 million to the state, on the grounds that he benefited from unconstitutional and invalid contracts between the state and Waterville Holdings Limited in 2006 for the construction of stadia for 2008 AFCON.
The case leading to the Supreme Court decision was initiated by Martin Amidu, the current Special Prosecutor.
Eventually, in March 2016, Mr. Woyome asked the court to give him three years to pay back the money, but the court declined to grant his wish.
He is, however, said to have refunded GHS4 million in November 2016 and an additional GHS600,000 and promised to pay the outstanding balance by quarterly instalments of GHS5 million, commencing April 1, 2017.
But he also initiated legal challenges at the Supreme Court challenging orders for him to pay the money which were all dismissed.
Mr Woyome further sued at International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) based in Paris, France, and the African Court of Justice, based in Arusha, Tanzania.
But in August 2017, the ICC threw out his case on the basis that he had failed to properly invoke its jurisdiction whilst his case at the African Court of Justice was also dismissed in June 2019.
Currently, the Supreme Court has given the Attorney General permission to sell properties belonging to Mr. Woyome to offset part of the GHS47 million he owes the state.