National Security operatives have swung into action to retrieve the V8 Toyota Land Cruiser in possession of popular movie actor John Dumelo.
The operatives caught the actor, who was part of the failed campaign to get John Mahama elected for a second time as president, with a vehicle belonging to the state, and retrieved one of them from a spraying shop at Abelemkpe, Accra, recently.
The second V8, ash in colour, which John Dumelo allegedly claimed was in possession of his girlfriend, is currently being pursued by the operatives, DAILY GUIDE learnt at the weekend.
When news broke that one of the two V8 Toyota Land Cruisers classified as missing from the pool of state vehicles had been retrieved from John Dumelo at an auto mechanic’s shop, he allegedly took to Facebook, a social media platform, to rubbish the publication, claiming that he bought the vehicle impounded by the state.
He posted, “I have not granted any interview both private or public to which I mentioned the name of the first lady for buying me a V8,” although DAILY GUIDE insists that it contacted him on Thursday via telephone and he said, “I wouldn’t like to comment about it.”
He continued, “I bought the vehicle myself; I never said it anywhere that Madam Lordina bought it for me. I have in my entire NDC life met her Excellency only once at a public event. Treat any publication that tries to link my purchase of a V8 to the former first lady as trash.”
“Did I work at the flagstaff house or hold any political appointment that entitled me to a state car? And I’m sure some people within the NDC are rejoicing because of this false news,” he reacted cynically before signing off with “Keep rejoicing…”
The vehicle retrieved at the spraying shop, with chassis number JTMHVOJ2F4159829, 2015 model with full option, had been dismantled and was going through re-modeling, including re-spraying – with parts allegedly imported from Dubai.
When the operatives invited him to the garage, he reportedly panicked before surrendering the expensive vehicle without any protest. The car was subsequently driven to the Office of the President Annex, close to the State House.
The operatives, upon a tip-off, swooped on the garage a couple of weeks ago and got hold of the auto mechanic who told them that the vehicle belonged to John Dumelo.
He was then telephoned to come to the garage and upon arrival, Dumelo reportedly said initially that he bought the V8 from a car dealer – Svani Company Limited – and claimed he was yet to complete the payment.
The operatives then keyed the chassis number into a centralized computer system but the results showed that the vehicle was registered in the name of the National Security Secretariat, which is a property of the Government of Ghana.
Sensing he was getting into trouble, he’s reported to have quickly changed his story, claiming that it was the former first lady, Lordina Mahama, who had given the V8 to him.
The security operatives immediately decided to cross-check from the former first lady to ascertain the facts but the actor (Dumelo) reportedly pleaded with them to stop and just take the vehicle away.
The operatives’ checks at Svani Motors along the Spintex Road indicated that the company imported the vehicle for the National Security Council Secretariat and that it (company) is one of the several auto dealers used by the government to import vehicles for the state.
DAILY GUIDE sources say John Dumelo got two V8s from the erstwhile NDC government, with his girlfriend driving one of them.
When he was asked to direct the operatives to the whereabouts of the other vehicle, he allegedly pleaded with them to allow him to travel to London and come back to produce it, saying by then the girlfriend would have returned from a trip she had made with the ash V8 Land Cruiser.
As at press time yesterday, the second vehicle had not been returned but Dumelo is claiming that he purchased the seized vehicle registered GE 8118 –16.
By William Yaw Owusu