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General News of Thursday, 31 May 2012

Source: GNA

Soldiers to file submission of no case as Prosecution close its case in Mobilla's trial

Defense counsel for the two soldiers who are being held for the death of Alhaji Issa Mobilla, former Northern Regional Chairman of Convention People’s Party, on Thursday said it would file a submission of no case after prosecution had closed its case.

At the Fast Track High Court in Accra, Ms Penelope Mamattah, Chief State Attorney, after calling its seventh witness, told the court that it had closed its case.

Mr. Thaddeus Sory, counsel for Corporal Appiah Yaw and Private Eric Modzaka, told the court that the accused would file a submission of no case.

He prayed the court to grant an adjournment to enable his clients to procure the court’s proceedings.

According to Mr. Sory, no case had been made against the accused persons after the prosecution had called seven witnesses, and the court adjourned the case to June 22.

Meanwhile, Lieutenant Colonel Johnny Eshun, a secretary to the Board of Inquiry of the Ghana Armed Forces which investigated the circumstances surrounding the death of Mobilla appeared before the court.

He identified the report of the Board in evidence and same was admitted by the court.

According to Lt.-Col. Eshun, the report indicated that the deceased died as a result of the several beatings.

He said the Board based its report on statements of witnesses which appeared before it.

Answering questions from Mr. Sory, Lt Col. Eshun said that the report of the Board indicated that Private Modzaka was not present when the incident (beatings of Mobilla) took place, and did not take part in the beatings.

Lt. Col. Eshun agreed with defense counsel that the report stated that there were several others that should be held for beating the deceased.

He told the court that none of the witnesses were intimidated when their evidence were heard by the Board and that witnesses were encouraged to speak the truth.

The seventh witness admitted that the beating of Mobilla was done in an open place.

Ms Mamattah explained to the court how statutory statements were obtained from Corporal Appiah, Private Modzaka and Private Seth Goka now at large.

Ms Mamattah said Private Modzaka had pleaded alibi before the District Magistrate Court.

She said although Corporal Appiah was present on the day of the incident, in the case of Private Seth Goka, there were inconsistency in his plea of alibi.

Corporal Yaw Appiah and Private Eric Modzaka are facing two charges of conspiracy to murder and murdering of Mobilla on December 9, 2004.

They have denied the charges and were remanded by an Accra High Court, presided over Mr. Justice Mustapha Habib Logoh.

The late Alhaji Mobilla was arrested by the police on December 9, 2004 for allegedly supplying the youth in Tamale with guns to foment trouble.

While in custody, the police claimed they received information that his followers and sympathisers were mobilising to free him.

The deceased was subsequently transferred from the police cells to the Kamina Military Barracks, and handed over to the three accused persons.

The prosecution said Alhaji Mobilla died in military custody three hours after he had been handed over to the accused persons, who were on duty that day.

The pathologist’s report revealed that the deceased was sent to the hospital dead and that he died from multiple wounds.**