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General News of Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Source: dailyguidenetwork.com

Ofosu Ampofo thrown out again

The hopes of the embattled National Chairman of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo to have his trial before an Accra High Court stopped have hit a snag.

This follows the dismissal of an application for stay of proceedings pending the determination of an appeal against a decision of the trial court.

According to the court presided over by Justice Samuel K. Asiedu, there was no merit in the application to warrant a stay of its proceedings.

The court also held that the application did not raise any exceptional circumstances for which it should stay its proceedings.

Main Trial

Mr. Ofosu-Ampofo and the party’s Deputy Communications Officer, Anthony Kwaku Boahen, are facing three charges before an Accra High Court over alleged leaked audio detailing strategies the NDC intends to use for 2020 election, one being the kidnappings of family members of political opponents.

The NDC members were captured on tape allegedly planning to commit crimes in the country and turn round to blame the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP).

Mr. Ofosu-Ampofo has been charged with one count of conspiracy to cause harm and two counts of assault against a public officer.

Mr. Boahen, on the other hand, is facing one count of conspiracy to cause harm.

Last month, Mr. Ofosu-Ampofo filed an application challenging the two charges of assault against a public officer.

The court, however, dismissed the application on the grounds that the charges are valid and the defect, as stated by the lawyer, is not fatal to the trial.

His lawyer, Tony Lithur, subsequently filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal seeking to overturn the decision of the trial judge.

Stay

The lawyer then filed an application for stay of proceedings pending the determination of the appeal.

Moving the motion, he told the court that there were exceptional circumstances for which the court should stay its proceedings.

He averred that the court is enjoined to protect fundamental human rights; one which he said included protection against “oppressive criminal charges.”

He, therefore, prayed the court to stay its proceedings to allow them argue their case before the Court of Appeal.

Opposition

The state represented by Asiama Sampong, a Chief State Attorney, opposed the application saying it did not raise any special circumstances for which the proceedings should be stayed.

He said the issue of the protection of the fundamental human rights of the accused person would be dealt with during the trial and prayed the court to refuse the application.

Mr. Sampong described the application as frivolous and an abuse of the court process.

The trial judge, Justice Asiedu, dismissed the application and adjourned the case to October 17 for continuation.