Information available to The Daily Democrat newspaper suggests a possible disruption of operations of the New Times Corporation, publishers of the Ghanaian Times and The Weekly Spectator newspapers due to non compliance of a court order over a year ago.
A source hinted that lawyers for the plaintiff are planning to trigger the last option available for the enforcement of the judgment by storming the premises of the New Times Corporation to seize some properties.
The court action was necessitated by the corporation’s refusal to pay the end of service benefit to Mr. Kofi Asuman, Managing Director for the period 2007-2013.
When his contract ended in May 2013, the then Board chaired by Mr. Clement Vanderpuye together with the Acting MD, Mr. J F K Accolatse and other management staff used a wrong method to calculate his benefits.
He petitioned the National Media Commission and the Corporation’s Board but none acknowledged receipt of his letter.
Sources close to the Corporation revealed that prior to the court case, the Corporation’s Lawyer, Mr. Dometi Kofi Sopkor, a very experienced Lawyer advised the payment of the entitlements but was ignored by the National Media Commission, the legally mandated employer of Managing Directors for state media institutions as enshrined in ACT 449 ,1993 SECTION 2e to appoint in consultation with the President, the chairmen and other members of the governing bodies of public corporations managing the state-owned media.
He went ahead to engage the services of a new lawyer to fight the case in court.
At a point in time, the Board then Chaired by Professor Omane-Antwi asked for out of court settlement but proposals sent by Mr. Asuman’s legal team received no acknowledgement for a whole year and therefore went back to the court and had judgment in their client’s favour on 30th June,2017.
The New Times Corporation filed for stay of execution but it failed due to the fact that the case was dismissed as being unmeritorious on 30th November, 2017.
The Corporation subsequently entered into negotiation to settle the debt but failed to honour obligations after the payment of two installments hence the decision by the lawyers to move in to cease properties to determine the next line of action.