War on Corruption: All is now set for the Mendo Ze embezzlement trial
18,364,546,702 FCFA is the sum that the former general manager of the Cameroon State Radio and Television, Gervais Mendo Ze has been accused of embezzling during his time as head of the corporation from 1988 to 2005. This was revealed by the public prosecutor during a submission at the Special Criminal Court on Thursday.
The presentation of the Attorney General was well implacable, precise and circumscribed and related to the alleged misappropriation of audio-visual royalties. The Attorney General has now referred Gervais Mendo Ze and his gang to the panel of judges to be tried for embezzlement and coercion of misappropriation of public funds amounting to 18,364,546,702 FCFA.
It is vital to include in this report that a 1981 order had created a tax called ‘audiovisual contribution’ known popularly as TV license and abbreviated in Cameroon as ‘RAD’. Correspondingly, a CRTV-RAD account was opened at the general treasury in Yaounde. One of Mendo Ze’s co-accused was responsible for collecting the TV license payments from all regional financial districts.
By some strange happenstance, a protocol agreement was signed between the Tax Director and the General Manager of CRTV and payments now had to be made through an account opened for this purpose in a local bank with a 10% increment.
Cameroon Intelligence Report gathered that the prosecution has established beyond reasonable doubts that the 10% sampling protocol agreement was illegal and was never provided for by the ordinance or any organic text. The fictional swelling of the TV License payments enabled Mendo Ze and others to provide bonuses and other undue benefits to their criminal gang at CRTV.
The matter has been set for November 1, 2016 for observations of the civil party and possibly the option of the accused defense reasons. Former Minister Delegate to the Minister of Communication, Mendo Ze was arrested and remanded in custody at the Yaounde Central Prison since November 12, 2014.
By Ebong Kingsley with files from Cameroon-info.net