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Crime & Punishment of Wednesday, 17 April 2019


Ofoso Ampofo, Kwaku Boahen granted GHC100,000 bail each

Ofosu-Ampofo sitting with Asiedu Nketiah and John Mahama at the High Court Ofosu-Ampofo sitting with Asiedu Nketiah and John Mahama at the High Court

The Accra High Court, Commercial Division on Tuesday granted a GH¢100,000.00 bail with a surety each to Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo the National Chairman and Mr Anthony Kwaku Boahen, Deputy Communications Director all of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), opposition party.

Mr Ofosu-Ampofo pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to cause harm and assault on a public officer whilst Mr Boahen pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to cause harm.

They are to make their next appearance on May 6.

Ms Gloria Afua Akuffo, the Attorney General (AG), prosecuting, told the court presided over by Justice Samuel K. Asiedu that on January 1, this year, a by-election was conducted at the Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency as a result of the demise of its Member of Parliament.

She said there were disturbances in the course of the elections and on February 3, Mr Ofosu-Ampofo met the Party’s Communications Directors at its Headquarters located at Adabraka, a suburb of Accra.

Ms Akuffo said an audio recording which came out of the meeting and was circulated in a cross-section of the media contains a set-up of a road-map of criminal activities targeted at the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC) and the Chairman of the National Peace Council. She said the tape was intercepted by the Criminal Investigation Department of the Police Service.

She said Mr Ofosu-Ampofo also incited the communicators of the party to molest both the EC and Peace Council Chairpersons as per the tape.

The AG said that the orchestrated electoral violence plot was going to be blamed on the New Patriotic Party, which is the ruling Party.

The Prosecution said, Mr Boahen also confirmed being at the meeting as well as confessed that the content of the tape was true on a popular radio station.

Mr Tony Lithur and Dr Dominic Akumey Ayine represented Mr Ofosu-Ampofo as his counsel.

In pleading for bail, Mr Lithur said his client had denied the offence and would prove his innocence at the appropriate time.

He said the accused person was not a flight risk due to his position in the party and was also preparing for the next general elections of which his presence would be crucial.

Mr lithur said his client had also attended to the Police anytime they needed him would be available whenever it is demanded by the court.

Mr Boahen was also represented by Dr Basit Aziz, Mr Edudzi Tamakloe and Baba Jamal as counsel.

In their application, Dr Basit said the case had no complainant as in every criminal case where the complainant’s name and identity is verifiable.

He said the offence was a misdemeanour and should have been sent to the district court.

Dr Basit said his client, he said, had also denied the offence, saying, the law presumed him innocent until he plead so or found guilty and that during proceedings, they would demonstrate that the charge had no basis and was frivolous.

He pleaded to the court to take cognisance of the fact that the constitution stipulates that the accused be compensated should their case be proven.

He said they would prove that the accused was not at the scene of crime.

Dr Basit said the accused was a public figure and would not run away when granted bail, adding that he should be given a self-cognisance bail and that he also have people of substance to stand as sureties.

Ms Akuffo pleaded with the court to make the bail terms commensurate to the offences.

The Court asked that all documents, including charge and fact sheets as well as the audio recording be made available to the lawyers of the accused persons as requested by them.

Mr Joseph Din Diok Kpbemka, Deputy AG, Mr Alfred Asiama and Madam Marina Appiah Opare, both Chief State Attorneys and Madam Agyakwa Asa Dankwa, Senior State Attorney were part of the Prosecuting team.

Also present at the Court were Mr John Mahama, former President, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, Minority leader, Mr Asiedu Nketia, Madam Hannah Bissiw, Mr Julius Debrah, Mr Okoh Vanderpuye, Alhaji Sani, among others.

There was heavy security presence as party faithfuls of the NDC also thronged the court.