Otumfuo Osei Tutu II
Reports that the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has breached United Kingdom (UK) laws by allegedly indulging in money laundering are turning out to be false.
DAILY GUIDE learnt that the sacked official of the Ghana International Bank in the UK, Mark Arthur, has said that Otumfuo Osei Tutu was innocent in the cash transaction that subsequently got him (Arthur) to lose his job.
Mr. Arthur was dismissed after Otumfuo had summoned him to deposit £200,000, as well as $200,000 in his (Otumfuo’s) personal account with the bank.
The aggrieved banker, from New Barnet, Hertfordshire – a dual citizen of the UK and Ghana – drove to his own home with the cash and then took it in an Uber taxi to the bank’s city offices for deposit in Otumfuo’s account, he told an employment tribunal.
In a statement submitted to the court yesterday, Arthur insisted that he did nothing wrong in depositing the money for the king.
“Mr Arthur’s position throughout his suspension, investigation, disciplinary process and the Employment Tribunal hearing is that he had done nothing wrong.
“Mr Arthur has consistently confirmed in evidence that at no time did he suspect that the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, did anything wrong,” portions of the statement underscored.
A record from the proceedings of the case at the Employment Tribunal in the UK, which is handling the case, has revealed that the focus of the matter has nothing to do with money laundering as reported by some sections of the media, including the British press.
The records show that the tribunal only has issues with the wrong procedure that two officials of the bank – Mark Arthur and Joe Mensah – handled the deposit of £350,000 into Otumfuo’s account.
Some media outlets in the UK reported that the Asantehene allegedly, indulged in money laundering by ordering Mark Arthur to deposit £350,000 into his accounts at Ghana International Bank.
But credible records from the tribunal rather indicate that Mr Mark Arthur is in trouble because according to his employers, he did not handle the cash properly.
Meanwhile, scores of financial gurus in the UK, who spoke to DAILY GUIDE on condition of anonymity, stated that there is no truth in the money laundering case against the Asantehene.
One of them insisted that the Asantehene, a diplomatic passport holder, like other recognized and respectable monarchs across the globe, is usually given special treatment by his banks, regarding deposits and withdrawals.
The source said he had thoroughly followed and studied the case in the Employment Tribunal and that nothing shows that the Asantehene had erred or breached any UK laws and so he was surprised about the media reports.
Asante Chiefs Angry
A powerful traditional leader in Kumasi, who also pleaded anonymity, said, “I have no right to pass a comment about an issue concerning the great Asantehene, but the truth must be told, this is a clear case of anti-Asante coup.”
Sounding very furious, he said some hidden faces usually fabricate negative stories about Otumfuo, especially anytime that the king travels outside the country, warning that Asanteman would deal ruthlessly with those people at the right time.
In a related development, almost all the radio stations in Kumasi kept mute over the Asantehene’s issue since the news was reported in the UK media and other local media outlets.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi