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General News of Monday, 17 June 2019

Source: citinewsroom.com

Ayariga’s plea against Amidu dismissed

An application by Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, challenging the capacity of the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, to prosecute him has been dismissed by the High Court.

According to the court, a determination on the capacity of the Special Prosecutor meant the court would be usurping the powers of the Supreme Court and also stopping Mr Amidu from working.

The court presided over by Justice Efia Serwa Botwe however, struck out three charges levelled against Ayariga and another charge against a businessman, who was alleged to have helped the MP to evade taxes.

The charges struck out are fraudulent evasion of customs duties and taxes, dealing in foreign exchange without license and transfer of foreign exchange from Ghana through an unauthorised dealer.

This according to the judge, is because particulars of those offences did not relate to corruption or corruption-related offences and are not under the remit of the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP).

The decision of the court leaves Mr. Ayariga answering only to the charge of using public office for private benefit.

Mr. Ayariga in his application argued that Martin Amidu is above 65 years and, therefore, per Article 199 (1) and (4) of the 1992 Constitution, he is not ‘qualified’ to hold public office.