Friday, August 31, 2012

Kennedy Agyapong trial - State prosecutors fail to turn up

AUGUST 24, 2012 (Page 3) STATE prosecutors today failed to turn up at the trial of the Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin North, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong who has been accused of pitting Ashantis against Gas and Ewes. The MP, his wife, lawyer, Atta Akyea and sympathisers got to the court premises before 9:00 a.m. but the prosecution had not shown up as at 10:40 a.m. When the case was called after 10:40 a.m., Mr Akyea rose to his feet and informed the court that it was obvious the prosecution would not show up. He prayed the court to permit the MP to travel outside the country for medical examination which the court obliged. The trial judge, Mr Ebenezer Osei Darko adjourned the case to October 16, 2012. The MP has since April 17, 2012 being trundled between the Adjabeng District Magistrate Court where the magistrate declined jurisdiction; the Human Rights Court which granted him bail; the Fast Track High Court, which was billed to commence his trial and the Supreme Court where the prosecution had prayed it to quash proceedings at the Fast Track High Court. He was first put before the Circuit Court presided over by Mr Ebenezer Osei Darko on July 19, 2012 On July 4, 2012, the Supreme Court threw out the state’s application which prayed it to quash proceedings at the lower court hearing the MP’s case because according to the state, the court lacked jurisdiction. However, in a unanimous decision, the highest court of the land ruled that the action filed by the Attorney-General (A-G) was “unnecessary and extremely odd” because the law empowered the A-G to file a nolle prosequi to discontinue the processes at the lower court. Following the Supreme Court’s decision, the state filed a nolle prosequi on July 6, 2012 to discontinue proceedings against the MP before the court, presided over by Mr. Justice Charles Quist. Contrasting the commotion which erupted following his arrest on April 16, 2012, the MP was today arraigned on a low key at the Circuit Court charged with two counts of provocation of riot and offensive conduct. He pleaded not guilty to the charges and was granted self recognisance bail after one of his lawyers, Mr. Frank Davis, had prayed the court to grant him bail because he was a man of repute, owned businesses and would comply with the bail terms. Mr. Davis also denied the prosecution’s assertion that the MP incited a particular group against the other. Counsel argued further that his client was not capable of declaring war and stressed that the MP did not own mass ammunition to do that. According to the lawyer, the MP would not cause war in his own country. A Principal State Attorney, Mr. Anthony Rexford Wiredu did not oppose bail and further pointed out that the accused person had so far conducted himself creditably. He explained that the MP appeared before the court on his own volition after he had been notified by the prosecution.

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