In late March this year, contacts of the Estatelligence Magazine at Harrods Estates in Mayfair of London triggered an interest in the top tier real estate market when a young lady from Ghana made contact following an interest by some deep throat property lawyers at London's Fleet Street. She was interested in properties at London's Primrose Hills and no further. And she appeared to have done her research. She minced no words that it was to be a swift transaction.
The appointment was fixed with Javad Marandi Khan for Sunday the 15th of April as she insisted on confidentiality of the transaction. It was reported that she walked into the Mayfair office dressed elaborately, smelling of Crystal Lalique L'Amour and with the crude confidence of a Black Panther maid. Her bag was reportedly carried by a demure lady of similar age by her side. The car she arrived in was a private rented Evoque chauffeured by a heavily moustached burly Asian man. The meeting was short. Yet details on her funds point to an off-shore account held in the Cayman Islands under the name of a company registered recently.
The next day after the appointment, Mr Khan and Ms Gyankroma Akufo-Addo visited the property located at London's post code NW3. It is a 5 bed Edwardian palatial purpose built with an exclusive plush garden and an off street car park for 6 cars. It is 387square metres in size and goes for a cool £9,250,000.00.
Although the deal was not consummated immediately our source at Harrods has indicated that she was to start occupation of the property in the first week of May as she has other property deals to complete during that week and hopes to stay there instead of a hotel. Harrods hopes to cash in on the opportunity as she seems to wield a deep kitty. It is not certain whether she will go ahead and occupy the property following the publication of this article, since the media is certain to be interested with their pens and cameras.
Once acclaimed as the champion of anti-corruption and the voice of nationalism to many Ghanaians, President Nana Akufo Addo is fast becoming a chip off the old stock of African leaders if not worse. Having led the West African country of Ghana for only 16 months after a campaign that rode on the promise of protecting the public purse for the sake of the ordinary citizen, this news in the real estate market of London send many a tongue wagging dejavu.
Further details not stated here reveal a sprawling conduit of asset grab with funds splurging from the very purse he was elected to protect through convoluted offshore entities.
Like gold to the mega rich, the London property market is the irresistible destination for not only the oil rich Asians but also the African wealthy. Before his demise, Libya's Muamar Qathafi held vast stakes in plush estates along the manicured leafy areas of London where his kids often played with the toys of wealth.
The time now seems to be ripe for Mr Nana Akufo Addo to also make his own entry into the hallowed corridors of the African Hall of fame for state loot into western accounts and real estate. His approach is however not very different from what pertained under former disgraced African leaders. Instead of being the face of such transactions, the diminutive president shops through his network of lawyers spearheaded by his daughter Ms Gyankroma Akufo-Addo.
What is sadly clear however is that, despite the high hopes of the youthful African population about the deepening of the continent's democracy, within that bubble of hope is a seed of corruption which is bound to deflate it sooner than later as the new leaders, such as Mr Nana Akufo Addo continue to find ways to scheme away the resources meant for their citizens