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General News of Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Source: GNA

Discharged secessionists re-arrested

They were earlier held on the charges of treason and rioting They were earlier held on the charges of treason and rioting

There was drama at an Accra Circuit Court when thirty-two alleged secessionists discharged by the court were re-arrested and escorted to the Police headquarters.

When the case was called on Monday, the Prosecution led by Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Sylvester Asare, informed the Court that they were withdrawing the charges leveled against the accused.

According to ASP Asare, the Court should therefore, discharge the accused.

“Our prayer this morning is that we humbly withdraw the charge sheet filed on November 23, this year and discharge the accused persons accordingly,” ASP Asare said.

But ASP Asare’s prayers attracted various submissions from defence counsel who described the move by the prosecution asa breach of the fundamental human rights of the suspects and an abuse of the court process by the State.

Mr Theophilus Donkor, counsel for Nene Agblorm, said it was unfair for the Police to arrest and keep accused who are bread winners of their families from September 25, this year to date.

He said the Prosecution’s actions were gross violation of the 1992 Constitution and a demonstration of malice on their part.

Mr Donkor, therefore, prayed the court to make consequential orders to the effect that the accused should go home freely without any further arrest by the Police.

He asked the prosecution to tell the Court the basis for, which accused were being discharged.

Mr George Asamaney, another counsel for the accused said the prosecution had earlier brought the accused persons before the same court and were admitted to bail.

He said prosecution must formally withdraw the charges so that if they were to proceed to a higher Court, they could make reference to that.

Mr Asamany claimed that the prosecution had on a number of occasions amended the charge sheet and so the withdrawal of the charges was one their antics.

The discharge of the accused nearly caused arguments from lawyers and armed Policemen who escorted the accused persons to court.

While lawyers of the accused requested their clients to leave the court room, the Police on the other hand took positions at the court premises and escorted the accused persons into a Black Maria van to the Police headquarter.

The accused persons are alleged to have incited other accused persons, who belonged to a Western Togoland Group –a secessionist group, who took to the streets and blocked the Juapong-Accra main road amid burning of lorry tyres and firing gunshots on September 25, this year.

They were earlier held on the charges of treason and rioting.

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