General News of Monday, 14 January 2019
Heavily armed Police officers have stormed a house in Cape Coast belonging to the mother of Nana Appiah Mensah who is wanted for alleged fraud and money laundering in the Menzgold Ghana saga.
Residents told 3news.com the officers, numbering about 20 arrived at the huge one-storey house located at Adaaso at about 11:20 Sunday in search of Nana Appiah Mensah who is popularly known as NAM1.
Sources within the Central Regional Police Command have confirmed the ‘friendly visit’ to the house by a team of officers from Accra and Cape Coast but did not give further details except to say they were there to “gather information,” our correspondent Thomas Cann reported.
According to the sources, “no one was arrested” and that the visit was part of investigations by Interpol in the case being handled by the Police Criminal Investigations Department. It is unclear whether the officers met the mother, Mrs. Ivy Brew, who is said to be the owner of the property that sits on a large compound.
A neighbour who witnessed the incident Sunday morning said they were there when suddenly “we just saw a lot of police [officers] at my next door. Apparently, they were looking for NAM1”
The source who spoke on condition of anonymity said the residents they initially thought the officers were in the neighbourhood because of an armed robbery, but it turned out they were after NAM1
“Initially, we thought it was armed robbery but later we heard they were looking for NAM1,” the source said, noting she never knew the property belongs to NAM1’s mother until Sunday’s incident.
People in the area told our correspondent Monday that aside someone in the house who is believed to be a caretaker, hardly do they see people moving in and out of the property that has been walled with electric fence wire.
According to them, once in a while, they find people come in and go.
When our correspondent visited the area Monday, the gate to the house was locked.
“There was a gentleman at the gate who told me his boss has asked him to come to the house to do something for the woman. For 30 minutes he has been at the gate without anyone responding to ringing of the doorbell,” Thomas Cann reported.
Police on Friday declared NAM1 wanted as they secured a warrant for his arrest.
The action by the Police followed a series of protests from aggrieved customers who have had their investments running into several thousands of dollars locked up in NAM1’s Menzgold firm.
“We are looking for him [Nana Appiah Mensah] to be arrested and that we have even obtained a warrant of arrest,” Director of the Police CID, DCOP Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo-Danquah, said in a statement Friday.
The Police have since notified Interpol to arrest Nana Appiah Mensah who is believed to be hiding in either South African or Nigeria.
The Bank of Ghana in August last year issued a public notice that Menzgold Ghana Limited is not licensed and has no authority to engage in the solicitation, receipt of money or investments and the payment of dividends or returns to its clients which is captured in Section 6 (1) of the Banks and Specialised Deposit-Taking Institutions Act, 2016 (Act 930).
It also hinted of impending sanctions, saying after several cautions to Menzgold, it has started discussions with relevant regulatory authorities to sanction them for breaching the law.
Though Menzgold called the bluff of the central bank, it was forced to shut down in September 2018 by the SEC.
As part of the shutdown notice, the firm was ordered not to take new contracts (investments).
SEC claimed evaluation of Menzgold’s documentations show the company does not have the licences to trade in gold, and that, its operations are in breach of Act 929 “as well as a threat to unsuspecting and uninformed investors”.
The company has since been in tango with SEC as well as customers and investors who are demanding their returns and investments.
But when the issues appeared to have escalated due to pressure from the customers, Nana Appiah Mensah run to parliament with a petition to intervene so the company can resume operations and pay its customers.
Intervene for us to resume operations – Menzgold begs Parliament The company pleaded with the House to particularly intervene in the impasse between it and the SEC, which the company claimed has caused delays in paying its customers interest on their investments.
The company claimed in the petition to the Finance Committee of Parliament that the complete shutdown of its gold collectible vault by SEC has “caused a lot of serious challenges for the company and its customers [both local and foreign]”.
Accordingly, the firm wants parliament to “intervene and help resolve this matter amicably”.