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General News of Friday, 27 July 2018

Source: dailyguideafrica.com

Judge angry over JB ‘killers’ trial delay

A magistrate hearing the committal of the two persons accused of murdering New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Abuakwa North in the Eastern Region, J.B. Danquah-Adu, has expressed anger over unreasonable delay of the case.

According to Arit N Semoh, who is hearing the case at an Accra Magistrate Court, she does not understand why the prosecution appears to be handling the matter at such a slow pace even though the incident occurred about three years ago.

She said if the police could handle the prosecution of the death of a sitting Member of Parliament in that manner, then she has no idea what would be the fate of the ordinary woman selling gari on the market.

“This is a whole MP. If we can treat a whole MP like this what happens to my poor old grandmother selling gari on the market. Or if I die, is this how you are going to treat me? Why are you behaving like this,” the Magistrate asked furiously.

Ms Nsemo’s patience was tested when the prosecution, led by DSP Amega, prayed the court to adjourn the matter so that the prosecution could get the bill of indictment.

When asked by the court as to why it was taking this long to get the bill of indictment on the two, the prosecutor told the court that “as at now I cannot tell the court why the bill is not ready.”

DSP Amega told the court that he would have to inquire from his superiors to confirm when the bill of indictment would be ready.



Fury

This is not the first time Ms. Nsemo is expressing anger at the prosecution for unreasonably delaying the matter.

She has on numerous occasions lambasted the prosecutions who appear to be comfortable with the delay in prosecuting the matter.

On many occasions, the prosecution had prayed for adjournments, saying they are still investigating the matter and were waiting for the advice of the Attorney General.

But it appears that advice is taking too long, as the prosecution is uncertain when the bill of indictment on the two would be ready.

Appearing before the court yesterday, DSP Amega once again prayed the court to adjourn the matter to get the bill of indictment.

This, however, did not go down well with the Magistrate who poured out her frustrations.

She said the 1992 Constitution guarantees fair trial and within fair trial is also a provision for speedy trial.

She noted that the accused persons had been in custody for almost three years while the victim is also demanding justice.

She, therefore, wondered why the prosecution had adopted a rather slow approach to the whole proceedings.

A leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and private legal practitioner, Nana Obiri Boahen, who held brief for the deceased family, also bemoaned the lackadaisical attitude of the prosecution.

He said the case involves the murder of an MP and the police ought to show some urgency in prosecuting the matter.

He indicated that the “whole country is fed up with the whole thing. The excuses are becoming too many.”

The case has been adjourned to August 15, 2018, for the prosecution to prepare the bill of indictment on the two.



Background

The Abuakwa North MP was on February 9, 2016, stabbed to death in his home at Shiashe in Accra.

Daniel Asiedu allegedly went to his house to rob him and during a struggle he stabbed the MP multiple times.

He has been charged with murder while his accomplice Vincent Boso is facing abetment of crime, to wit, murder charges.

The two were discharged by an Accra High Court after the Attorney General filed for discontinuation of the earlier trial.

The two were, however, rearrested, with new charges levelled against them.

An Accra High Court has refused to grant them bail, saying the police are still investigating the matter.