The alleged kidnapping case in Takoradi which the Police is now treating as a staged event by the victim and her supposed collaborators to make money cost the Western Regional Minister, Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, Ghc3,000.
This is according to Justice Acquah, the personal assistant to the Western Regional Minister,
According to him, the money was paid to the supposed kidnappers of the woman, Josephine Panyin Mensah, through the Police and that the mother of the alleged victim was also involved in the effort.
“At the point of the payment, the mother was collaborating with the police to find the exact location of the woman. The Minister gave the money to the police to give to the kidnappers because he wanted to get to the bottom of the matter. It was an amount of GHS 3,000 given to the police through the Regional Commander. But the kidnappers initially demanded an amount of GHS 500 and increased it to a GHS 1, 000,” he said.
Mr. Acquah made the revelation on Accra-based Citi FM.
The revelation comes in the wake of an allegation by the Police that the whole kidnapping had been staged and that the woman who was said to be pregnant when she was seized on September 16th “was never pregnant within the period under review.”
Consequently, the Police is now treating Josephine Panyin Mensah as a suspect in the case. “She may have conspired with other persons over her possible planned disappearance,” the Police said.
The woman was later found in Axim on September 21st and her family says she was found without her pregnancy, implying a miscarriage. But the Police are not buying the explanation.
In a statement issued on Thursday, September 23, 2021, the Police said a thorough medical examination by the medical doctors at the Axim Government Hospital showed the woman not been pregnant.
According to the police, she claimed she attended the European Hospital in Takoradi for her antenatal reviews and assessment before the kidnapping but Medical records at the facility suggest that the lady visited the hospital without pregnancy sometime in October 2020.
The Police has since arrested three people to aid with investigations into a possible conspiracy to extort money.
Meanwhile, the Police’s conclusion is corroboration of earlier claims by the Western Regional Minister that the kidnapping had been staged.
However, the husband of Josephine, Michael Simmons, has insisted that his wife was pregnant and that she had been kidnapped.
Meanwhile, some angry townsfolk have invoked curses on the regional Minister and the Police over the issue, amidst the smashing of fresh eggs on the ground and the pouring of libation, the residents asked the spirits to deal with anybody who is accusing Panyin of faking her kidnapping and pregnancy.
The Police have since said they are considering a second opinion on the alleged lost pregnancy.