Unconfirmed reports emanating from the Ghanaian capital, Accra indicate that embattled House Speaker Alex Tyler has been arrested for money laundering.
Tyler was alleged to have been traveling with huge cash from Burkinafaso through the Accra Kotoka International Airport when local airport security officers busted him on Wednesday September 21, the report said.
A foreign ministry official who spoke on the condition of anonymity confided in this writer Wednesday evening that rumors of the embattled speaker’s arrest had filtered into the ministry but there had been no official confirmation yet.
This writer followed up with a call at the Liberian Embassy in Ghana, but was told by the Charge’ D’affaires that the embassy was yet to receive any report about the speaker’s arrest. A diplomat told this paper that if it is true that Tyler had been arrested, then he may be kept in “communicado” following a proper investigation before communicating with the Liberian Embassy in Ghana for onward communication here.
This paper’s sources at the Kotoka airport in Ghana was up to press time making follow ups on the names of the number of foreign nationals arrested on the same day at the airport, but was yet to establish the arrest of Speaker Tyler.
There are speculations here that the money in question was a refund Tyler had collected from Burkinafaso and had refused to channel the cash through the banking system. Tyler who faces bribery charges here at the criminal court in connection with a Global Witness report in which several past and current government officials allegedly received bribes totally USD950, 000 to change a concession law in favor of a British company-Sable Mining, had been entangled with barrage of allegations.
He was forced by his colleagues to recuse himself from presiding over session after nearly two months of stand-off which impeded legislative functions at the lower house. Tyler wrote the House’s Presiding officer to seek treatment abroad for some unknown ailment days after he recused himself before his departure from the country.
It was also reported here that he was denied an official passport by the Foreign Ministry’s passport division, a report subsequently denied by his aide before his recent travel. Investigations continues.
By Othello B. Garblah