News – Obuoba Fm || Agye Babia! Mon, 21 Dec 2020 11:26:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 US-based Ghanaian surgeon pleads guilty to $29m Healthcare fraud Mon, 21 Dec 2020 11:26:30 +0000 Dr. Moses de-Graft Johnson, a dual citizen of the United States and Ghana, pled guilty on Friday to committing health care fraud, conspiracy to commit health care fraud, and aggravated identity theft, Lawrence Keefe, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida has announced.

Over the course of almost four years, beginning in late 2015 or early 2016 until his arrest in February 2020, deGraft-Johnson did significant harm to hundreds of patients living in the Tallahassee area. Many of these innocent victims underwent unnecessary and invasive surgical procedures, while others were victimized through medical records reflecting procedures he did not perform – erroneous and misleading records that could cause doctors in the future to determine a mistaken course of medical treatment for many patients.

“The United States will continue to work to recover the ill-gotten gains of de-Graft-Johnson’s criminal behavior, to identify information that will help his victims correct their important medical records, and to identify how he gained access to his victims so we can make sure nothing like it ever happens again,” said U.S. Attorney Keefe.

deGraft-Johnson, 46, owned and operated Thorvasc PA, a Florida corporation doing business as the Heart and Vascular Institute of North Florida (HVINF). HVINF was a physician’s office and outpatient catheterization laboratory located in Tallahassee. As part of his plea, deGraft-Johnson acknowledged engaging in a wide-ranging and consistent pattern of performing two invasive diagnostic angiography procedures – one on each leg – on hundreds of his patients, whether medically indicated or not.

When his patients returned for follow-up office visits, deGraft-Johnson submitted fraudulent claims to their insurance companies stating he performed athrectomies during the appointments. Using this scheme, deGraft-Johnson admits he falsely claimed to have performed over 3,000 of these surgical procedures to clear blockages in arteries in as many as 845 of his patients’ legs.

“deGraft-Johnson’s unscrupulous behavior placed the lives of his many patients at risk while siphoning funds from vital health care programs for personal gain,” said Omar Pérez Aybar, Special Agent in Charge for the Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. “We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to hold accountable health care professionals who prioritize greed over critical patient care.”

To date, ongoing investigation and analysis have determined that the defendant fraudulently obtained at least $29 million – and very likely more. The United States is aggressively pursuing all of deGraft-Johnson’s forfeitable assets in the U.S. and overseas, including luxury vehicles; jewelry; homes in Manhattan, Southampton, New York, Miami, and the Houston area; and more than $1 million in cash.

“Health care fraud hurts all Floridians by artificially inflating the cost of medical services and harming the integrity of private insurance,” said Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody. I am proud of the work my Medicaid Fraud Control Unit did in helping bring the defendant in this multimillion dollar health care fraud case to justice. We will continue to work with our great federal partners to identify, investigate and end health care fraud in Florida.”

deGraft-Johnson inappropriately gained access to his vulnerable victims by establishing relationships with churches, nursing homes, a hospital, and an outreach organization. The United States Attorney’s Office is working to uncover all aspects of the methods he used to identify and exploit his former patients, many of them in underserved communities. Prosecutors are also pursuing information regarding the unnecessary medical procedures and falsified medical records, so that the defendant’s former patients may be properly informed regarding their true medical conditions and can secure appropriate treatment going forward.

“Today’s plea is a direct result of the commitment by the FBI and our law enforcement partners to aggressively pursue those who willingly defraud American citizens,” said Rachel L. Rojas, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Jacksonville Division. “Instead of caring for his patients, this defendant targeted vulnerable members of our community, subjected them to unnecessary surgical procedures, and falsified documents so he could line his pockets with millions of taxpayer dollars. Fraud, like this, reduces the availability of critical resources and contributes to the rising cost of healthcare for all. The FBI and our law enforcement partners will continue to investigate these crimes and prosecute all those who defraud the American public for their own personal gain.”

deGraft-Johnson pled guilty to 56 counts of health care fraud, conspiracy to commit health care fraud, and aggravated identity theft. The conspiracy and health care fraud charges each have a maximum prison sentence of 10 years, and a maximum fine equal to twice the value of the loss to the health care benefit program. The aggravated identity theft charge has a mandatory sentence of 2 years of imprisonment, which must be consecutive to any other sentence, and a maximum fine of $250,000. deGraft-Johnson’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for April 8, 2021, at the United States District Court in Tallahassee.



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E/R: Man, 66, found dead in guest house after checking in with girl, 25 Mon, 21 Dec 2020 11:23:33 +0000 A man believed to be 66-years-old has been found dead in a guest house in Koforidua hours after checking in with a 25-year-old lady.

The man now deceased who gave his name as William Agyei to the receptionist at Adom Guest house onboard a Red Toyota Corolla with registration number ER 1614 -17 lodged at the guest house with the lady on December 19, 2020.

According to the receptionist, on the next day, she found the man lying motionless when she entered the room in an attempt to clean after several bangs on the door went unanswered.

The lady who checked in with man was, however, nowhere to be found.

The owner of the guest house reported the incident to the Effiduase police. Investigators proceeded to the scene and on inspection found several sex enhancement drugs including vigrx for men, Deep heat spray, unirob polar ice, bendroflumeethiazide tablets and several other used tablets were seen in a bag found in the room.

Also, a red bag containing the personal clothes of the deceased including some regalias and a black handbag containing an amount of Gh¢2000 were also found.

External inspection of the body was conducted but no marks of violence were found except foaming on the mouth.

The body has since been conveyed to St Joseph’s Hospital Morgue for preservation awaiting autopsy.

Meanwhile, the Toyota car used by the deceased has been taken to the police station for safekeeping, whilst frantic efforts are being made to trace the identity of the said young lady and the family of the deceases to assist investigations.

The red bag with the deceased clothes and regalias as well as the medicines and the money are also in Police custody.

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Mahama reports Jean Mensa to The Commonwealth Mon, 21 Dec 2020 10:58:51 +0000 The 2020 Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, has explained his reasons for his inability to accept the results of the elections to The Commonwealth.

The Ghanaian leader stated his position on the elections on Friday, when he met the Secretary General of The Commonwealth, Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, in Accra .

Following the meeting, Mr Mahama in a tweet stated: “Meeting with the Secretary General of The Commonwealth, Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, and her team.

“Together with Professor Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, NDC National Chairman Samuel Ofosu Ampofo and others, we briefed the Secretary General on the basis of our position on the results declared by the Electoral Commission.”


Mr Mahama had described Mrs Jean Adukwei Mensa as the most incompetent Chair the Electoral Commission (EC) has ever had.

Mr Mahama told supporters of the party in the Bono East Region on Wednesday, December 16 that since the inception of the Fourth Republican constitution, Mrs Mensa has been the only chair of the Commission who has demonstrated her inability of conducting a free and fair election.

“But I must say, things shouldn’t have happened this way. This is not our first election. But unfortunately, we find ourselves here due to the incompetence of this Electoral Commission,” he stated emphatically.

Supporters of the NDC are yet to accept the results of the election. Demonstrations have been held in Accra, Tamale, Ashaiman and Kumasi to express their displeasure for the outcome of the election.

To that end, Mr Mahama said “if it were to be any of the advanced countries [Jena Mensa] would have resigned by now”.

He further told the supporters that “we know we won the elections but the results were manipulated.”

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Nigeria school attack: Hundreds of boys freed Fri, 18 Dec 2020 10:51:17 +0000

Hundreds of schoolboys kidnapped last week from a boarding school in north-western Nigeria have been released, local authorities have told the BBC.

A spokesman for the governor of Katsina state said 344 had been freed and were all in a good condition.

However, other reports suggest some remain in the hands of their captors.

The attack was claimed by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram, which hours earlier released a video apparently showing some of the boys.

In his statement, the spokesman, Abdul Labaran, said the boys were being taken to the regional capital Katsina City, and would soon be reunited with their families.

He said the clip released by Boko Haram was authentic, but a message seemingly from the group’s leader Abubakar Shekau was, instead, by an impersonator.

The authorities have previously given a lower figure than locals for the number abducted and it is unclear if all are now safe.

The state Governor Aminu Bello Masari was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying, “we have recovered most of the boys. It’s not all of them,” while a security source told the AFP news agency some remained with their captors.

Mr Labaran said none of the kidnapped boys had been killed, contradicting a boy shown in the video who said some had been killed by Nigerian fighter jets.

It is unclear how the boys’ release came about but the news was confirmed to BBC Hausa by another state government official.

What happened during the attack?

Witnesses said armed men came to the school in Kankara town on Friday evening last week, and many students jumped the school fence and fled when they heard gunshots.

Others were tracked by the gunmen, who tricked them into believing that they were security personnel, students who escaped said. Once the students were rounded up, they were marched into the nearby forest by the armed men.

On Thursday, video was released bearing Boko Haram’s emblem, showing dozens of boys, some of whom appear to be very young.

One of the boys said they were kidnapped by Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau’s group and that all the government troops who had been sent to help them should be turned back.

What’s the wider picture?

Boko Haram has become notorious over the last decade for school kidnappings, including one in Chibok in 2014, when nearly 300 schoolgirls were seized. The group’s name loosely translates as “Western education is forbidden”.

However, these abductions have until now taken place in north-eastern Nigeria, where Boko Haram is based.

Despite Boko Haram’s claim, the Nigerian government said the Katsina abduction was carried out by local gangs connected to the Islamist group.

Armed attacks and kidnappings are rife in north-western Nigeria and are often blamed on bandits, a loose term for gangs operating in the area.

Amnesty International says more than 1,100 people were killed by bandits in the first six months of this year, with the government failing to bring the attackers to justice.

Source: BBC

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U/W: NPP suspends seven members over alleged misconduct Fri, 18 Dec 2020 10:41:07 +0000 Barely two weeks after the election, the New Patriotic Party NPP in the Sissala West Constituency has indefinitely suspended seven of its members over alleged misconduct.

According to a letter sighted by Starr News, the suspensions are pending “the final outcome of the disciplinary processes which have commenced against them on grounds of misconduct as petitioned by concerned Party members.”

The affected members are former Upper West Regional Minister George Hika-Benson, immediate past District Chief Executive Mohammed Zackaria Bakor, Majeed Limann, Hudu Muah, Musah Wibireh, Bahua Abudu and Halidu Yahaya.

They are alleged to have campaigned against the NPP and it’s parliamentary candidate for Sissala West, Naliwie Salifu, ahead of the 2020 polls.

Mr. Hika-Benson was a minister under the Kufour administration while Mr. Zakaria Bakor was sacked as the District Chief Executive for Sissala West on the 29th of September 2020.

The suspension is in line with Article 3 (7, 1) of the NPP’s constitution which states that “a member may be suspended from membership of the party, or holding an office in the party, pending an enquiry into his or her conduct by a Disciplinary Committee.”

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Election 2020: Wenchi High Court to rule on Sene West seat Dec. 17 Wed, 16 Dec 2020 10:19:06 +0000 The Wenchi High Court will on December 17, 2020, give its verdict on the Sene West parliamentary election dispute.

The petition was presented before the court by the New Patriotic Party (NPP)’s parliamentary candidate Joseph Markay Kuma after he expressed dissatisfaction with electoral irregularities in the constituency.

The party requested an injunction on the declaration of the parliamentary results in order to review the outcomes of the elections in the constituency.

Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for North Tongu constituency, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has indicated that the NDC won the parliamentary seat for Techiman South and the Sene West constituency.

According to him, the NDC has won 138 instead of 136 parliamentary seats as purported by the Electoral Commission (EC).

Mr Ablakwa, however, cautioned the EC to respect the decision of the electorates.

He said, “respect the people’s verdict and mandate. Don’t usurp the will of the people. We have the majority. We have 138. Techiman South and Sene West belong to the NDC. We have won convincingly.”

“If they want us to cooperate at inauguration, midnight from January 6, 2021, allow us choose our Speaker. Let the Majority be accorded what it is due so far as the constitution is concerned,” he added.

In this regard, the Lawyers for Joseph Markay Kuma withdrew their motion of injunction on the declaration of the results as filed in their petition.

The court has, however, awarded a cost of ¢6,000 against the NPP parliamentary candidate for withdrawing their petition for the interlocutory injunction.

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Ghana secures qualification for U-20 AFCON Wed, 16 Dec 2020 09:58:37 +0000 Ghana’s Black Satellites needed a penalty shootout victory over Niger to reach the 2021 U-20 AFCON finals.

Prestige FC’s Frank Boateng converted the decisive kick that won the day for the former World U-20 champions.

Coach Karim Zito’s team failed to take their chances in the first half as Precious Boah, Abdul Mugeez and Matthew Anim Cudjoe all missed glaring chances.

In the 68th minute Karim Zito withdrew Huda Issah and introduced Eugene Frimpong in his place. Eugene’s introduction injected decent amount of energy in the Ghanaian side but Niger stood strong.

Matthew Cudjoe nearly grabbed the opener for Ghana on the 71st minute as he powered a well driven effort across the face of goal.

While Ghana were keen on getting control over the game the Nigerien stuck to their strategy of relying on long supplies upfront.

Niger could have stolen the win when a decisive ball was weighted in with a Nigerien forward waiting to finish the game but Danlad Ibrahim came to the rescue of Ghana with a save.

Both sides failed to create any clear chances as the game headed into extra time.

Substitute Frank Boateng managed to put the ball into the Niger net but he was flagged offside by the assistant one.

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Withdraw PUB; it’s inimical to academic freedom – Lloyd Amoah to gov’t Wed, 16 Dec 2020 09:43:51 +0000 The Public University Bill is inimical to the growth of public universities in the country and must be withdrawn immediately, Dr. Lloyd Amoah, Director of the Centre for Asian Studies at the University of Ghana has stated.

According to him, the bill seeks to micromanage public universities and stem academic freedom in the country.

“What this bill seeks to do is to bring in the executive to micromanage how we run our universitiesOpinions and thinking can not necessarily always be in sync. What has happened with the UTAG of UG and our parent body has been a kind of dichotomy in the way the bill has been viewed.

“We have made it clear that this bill is inimical to the running of public universities in this country and must be withdrawn. The bill affects all of us in this country especially the coming generation. Those of us leading this fight are not doing it for ourselves and we can’t do it for ourselves.”

Speaking on the Morning Starr, Dr Amoah stated thatthe United Nations and other international bodies have been alerted on the raging issue of the Public University Bill.

“This matter has also be internationalised. The UN and other bodies have been alerted on this matter. Those who went about drafting this bill couldn’t even spell public right. They spelt it as pubic and that tells you the rush.”

The Public Universities Bill seeks to harmonize the finances, administration and governance structure of public universities in Ghana.

The Public Universities Bill when passed, will give the government of Ghana the power to appoint the majority of members of the University Council.

The University Council will then have the power to appoint and dismiss public university officials.

The Public Universities Bill will give the president the power to dissolve the University Council which will now have the power to appoint a chancellor.

The University Council will be able to control the finances of the university and determine the allocation of funds.

In addition to this, there will be a proposal to rename four public universities after various personalities.


Source: Ghana/

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Resolve outstanding matters, choose suitable burial date – Akufo-Addo to Rawlings’ family Wed, 16 Dec 2020 09:40:54 +0000 The Office of the President has asked the family of former President Jerry John Rawlings to communicate a consultatively agreed date for his burial.

This, they say, will inform the government’s planning process for a befitting ceremony for the late statesman.

In a statement signed by the Chief of Staff, Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, the Awadada and the Agbotui and allied family were urged to “resolve all outstanding matters” in order “for the necessary action to be taken as soon as possible”.

President Nana Akufo-Addo also acknowledged receipt of a letter from the family regarding an initial date that was announced.

This comes after the family of Jerry John Rawlings dismissed reports of the funeral date of the country’s longest-serving head of state.

The date was disclosed by James Victor Gbeho, Head of Funeral Planning Committee in a press release, Monday, which said the family in consultation with government have agreed on December 23, for the funeral.

But Secretary to the Agbotui family in a press release noted that the said consultation with the family never took place.

The Awadada of Anlo State also lamented that the announcement of December 23 as the burial date was not just a show of disrespect for Anlo values, but disregard for the unity and peace of the Ghanaian people, which the late Mr Rawlings upheld.

Former President Jerry John Rawlings died on Thursday, November 12, at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra after a short illness.

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Akwatia NPP blames Yaw Osafo-Maafo for lost seat Wed, 16 Dec 2020 09:38:13 +0000 Some New Patriotic Party (NPP) executives in the Akwatia Constituency have accused Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo-Maafo of being responsible for the party’s failure to retain the parliamentary seat in the just-ended election.

The Constituency Organiser, Kwadwo Owusu Adiomi, has alleged that the conduct of the former Finance Minister in the constituency towards the party’s parliamentary candidate, Ernest Yaw Kumi, following the defeat of the incumbent Member of Parliament, Mercy Adu Gyamfi, affected the party’s fortunes in the elections.

Mr Adiomi made the allegations on Monday, on Adom FM’s Burning Issues, a show hosted by Akua Boakyewaa Yiadom.

“I blame Hon. Yaw Osafo-Maafo for the party’s misfortune and defeat in the area because he didn’t endorse the candidature of Ernest Yaw Kumi after her favorite, Ama Sey, was defeated during the parliamentary primaries,” he said.

The National Democratic Congress (NDC)’s Henry Yiadom Boakye won the seat with 19,899 votes representing 51.5% while the NPP’s Ernest Kumi secured 18,742 votes representing 48.5% out of the total 38,646-total valid votes cast.

In the presidential election, Nana Akufo-Addo polled 21,758 while former President John Mahama garnered 16,181 votes.

The results for other 10 presidential candidates are as follow: GUM – 209, CPP – 15, GFP – 11, GCPP – 10, APC – 13, LPG – 8, PNC – 2, PPP – 7, NDP – 10 and the only independent candidate had 13 votes.

But, the NPP’s organiser believes that the ‘skirt and blouse’ voting pattern adopted by the electorates in the area is as a result of some alleged machination adopted by the Senior Minister, the incumbent MP and some party faithfuls against Ernest Kumi.

Already, the Akwatia constituency executives of the NPP served notice of their intention to sack MP, Mercy Adu Gyamfi from the party effective January 7, 2021, over alleged underground dealings against the party.

The party also hinted at plans to suspend some executives who they alleged aided Ama Sey to campaign skirt and blouse votes against NPP’s Ernest Yaw Kumi leading to his defeat in the just ended parliamentary election.

However, a group by name Friends of Ama Sey has debunked claims that the incumbent MP engaged in ‘skirt and blouse’ campaign against Ernest Yaw Kumi.

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