The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) has arrested Cecilia Abena Dapaah, the immediate past Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources.
The arrest is in respect of suspected corruption and corruption-related offences regarding large amounts of money and other valuable items reportedly stolen from her residence by two househelps in 2022.
A press statement issued by the OSP said she was placed under arrest at 11:55 GMT on Monday, July 24, 2023.
Mrs Dapaah resigned from the position of Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources on Saturday, July 22, 2023.
The OSP explained that she was placed under arrest in respect of suspected corruption and corruption-related offences regarding large amounts of money and other valuable items reportedly stolen from her residence.
“Ms. Dapaah is being questioned by authorised Officers of the OSP.” the statement added.
OSP searches Cecilia Dapaah’s home
Later on Monday (July 24) officials from the OSP accompanied by police personnel visited the private home of Mrs Cecilia Abena Dapaah at Abelemkpe in Accra and searched the place.
Some neighbours gathered around to observe the security officials enter the house.
What happened in Cecilia Dapaah’s home?
Two house helps working for Cecilia Abena Dapaah and her husband, Mr. Daniel Osei Kuffour are facing charges at an Accra Circuit Court, for allegedly stealing monies and items worth millions of cedis from the couple’s residence at Abelemkpe in Accra.
The accused individuals, 18-year-old Patience Botwe and 30-year-old Sarah Agyei, have been charged with conspiracy to commit a crime and five counts of stealing.
The alleged thefts occurred between July and October 2022.
During this period, the house helps allegedly stole personal effects belonging to Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, including assorted clothes valued at GH¢95,000, handbags, perfumes, and jewellery worth US$95,000.
Additionally, Ms. Botwe is accused of stealing six pieces of Kente cloth worth GH¢90,000 and six sets of men’s suits valued at US$3,000, which belong to the minister’s husband.
Furthermore, three other individuals, identified as Ms. Botwe’s current and former boyfriends and her father, are also facing charges for allegedly being involved in the crime. They have been respectively charged with dishonestly receiving GH¢1 million, GH¢180,000, and GH¢50,000.
According to court proceedings, the stolen monies and items belonged to Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah and her husband, taken from their bedroom in their residence.
The accused individuals were arraigned before an Accra Circuit Court, presided over by Susana Ekuful, on Thursday, July 20, 2023. However, their pleas have not been taken yet.
The court granted bail to Sarah Agyei in the sum of GH¢1 million with two sureties. The sureties are required to deposit their Ghana cards with the court’s registrar. The bail conditions are subject to review by the substantive judge, as Susana Ekuful was serving as a relief judge.
On the other hand, Ms. Botwe, along with her alleged boyfriends and father, have been remanded into lawful custody.
The complainants reported the theft case to the police in June 2023 after discovering the missing cash and personal effects. Ms. Botwe was caught red-handed entering the couple’s room with a duplicate key, leading to her arrest.
Further investigations revealed that Patience, with the help of her alleged accomplice Sarah, had hidden the stolen money and used it to purchase properties and expensive items.
Below is a copy of the statement
At 11:55 GMT on 24 July 2023, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, who resigned from the position of Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources on 22 July 2023, was placed under arrest by the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) in respect of suspected corruption and corruption-related offences regarding large amounts of money and other valuable items reportedly stolen from her residence.
Ms. Dapaah is being questioned by authorised Officers of the OSP.