Six persons have been remanded by the Somanya Municipal court to assist the police with further investigation into five articulated trucks that were impounded by the Somanya District Police command this week. The trucks were conveying a total of 4,000 bags of fertilizer suspected to have been diverted from Samreboi in the Western Region to Somanya in the Yilo Krobo Municipality of the Eastern Region.
The six are Patrick Nartey, 43 who is a farmer and has been identified as the Receiver, John Darkey, 65 also a farmer whose house the goods were offloaded and Mohammed Ahmed, a 31-year old driver.
Others are Michael Agyapong, 45, Iliasu Seed, 46 and Yaw Antwi, 34, all drivers of articulated trucks.
One other driver Kwaku Owusu is currently at large and the police have mounted a manhunt for him.
The Somanya District Police Command in collaboration with some citizens and other state institutions on Monday 19th August, 2019 impounded 5 articulated trucks with 4,000 bags of fertilizer meant for the government’s ‘Planting for food and jobs’ initiative at Agorme a suburb of Somanya in the Eastern Region.
The fertilizers were suspected to have been diverted from Samreboi in the Western Region. Information available to the Daily Statesman indicates that on Monday, August 19, 2019, at about 5:30 am Police in Somanya had a tip-off about the arrival of the fully-loaded trucks.
The District Police Commander, DSP Isaac Otsin, with his men swiftly laid surveillance and intercepted the trucks belonging to one KITEKO company based in Accra. Each truck was carrying about 800 bags of fertilizer.
As at the time of arrest, one of the vehicles had offloaded the fertilizer in a private house with House Number C8/2 at Agorme, a suburb of Somanya.
One of the remanded suspects Patrick Nartey, 43, claimed ownership of the fertilizers but failed to produce waybill when demanded by the Police.
According to reports, the drivers had already told the police that they were part of 10 trucks loaded with fertilizer meant for cocoa farmers in Samreboi in the Western Region. This contradiction between the drivers and Patrick Nartey compelled the Police to speak to officials of KITEKO Transport.
The Public Relations Officer of the Eastern Regional Police Command, DSP Ebenezer Tetteh confirmed the incident to the media and stated that investigation will be conducted to verify various claims made by the suspects.
Regional Minister’s Visit
Following the Arrest and subsequent remand, Eric Kwakya Darfour, the Eastern Regional Minister paid an emergency visit to Somanya on Wednesday 21st August, 2019 to ascertain for himself the facts of the issue.
The Minister applauded the efforts of the citizens, the Municipal Chief Executive of the Yilo Krobo Municipality, Ebenezer Tetteh Kupualor, and the Somanya District Police Command for their collaborative effort in apprehending the alleged Cocoa fertilizer smugglers.
The minister called on Ghanaians who have any information about the incidence to give them to the relevant agencies for further investigation. He also entreated all citizens to emulate the actions of the people of Yilo Krobo to assist security agencies in combating crimes in the country.
The six reminded suspects are expected to reappear before the court on 2nd September, 2019.