NDC’s Ofosu-Ampofo in court today as defence lawyers push for withdrawal of charges Featured

By Paul Nyojah Dalafu January 29, 2020 849 0
The NDC chairman is accused of inciting shock troops to commit violence The NDC chairman is accused of inciting shock troops to commit violence

At the high court in Accra today the national chairman of the National Democratic Congress, Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, will be taken through major processes to determine his guilt or otherwise in a crucial criminal case.

Together with him in the dock will be a deputy communications director of the NDC, Anthony Kwaku Boahen.

The prosecution will begin calling its first witnesses from today in a trial that is expected to go the long haul. The court will be packed for the opening hearing, with members of the press and various civil society actors expected.

Messrs Ampofo and Boahen have been hauled before the court over a leaked tape which suggested that the opposition NDC had been planning to commit crimes, plotting at the same time to blame the ensuing violence and insecurity on the governing New Patriotic Party.

The “plot”

The plot, according to the controversial audio recording, involved creating a general sense of insecurity in Ghana with actions not limited to kidnappings and arson.

There were also plans to launch unprovoked attacks on public officials such as the chair of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensa, and the chairman of the National Peace Council, Reverend Professor Emmanuel Asante.

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Yvonne Attakora-Obuobisa, told the court on Monday that the state would hold a conference with its first witness, who had gone abroad for medical reasons. She requested an adjournment to Wednesday (today) to allow the state’s witness to be present in court.

Lithur defends

Tony Lithur, counsel holding brief for Ofosu-Ampofo, did not oppose the date recommended by the prosecution, but this did not please Dr Aziz Bamba, counsel for Kwaku Boahen, who raised concerns about the turn of events.

He argued that he expected that in the event of the state’s first prosecution witness still not being available, it would be acceptable under the rules of the court to have the second prepared to appear and testify, as the case commenced as long ago as April last year.

He therefore pleaded with the court to strike out the case because the prosecution is not ready, and lamented that the prosecution was wasting the time of both accused.

The DPP however objected, saying the delay could not be blamed on the prosecution. She argued that it was rather the two accused who had been filing multiple applications since the start of the case to delay the process.

Main case

Mr Ofosu-Ampofo is charged with one count of conspiracy to cause harm and two counts of assault against a public officer, while Mr Boahen faces one count of conspiracy to cause harm.

Both men have been granted bail of GHC100,000 with one surety each.

The NDC chairman, the prosecution says, was captured in the recording allegedly planning to commit crimes and blame these on the governing NPP.

The Office of the Attorney General further alleges that the NDC leaders incited party members to mount a relentless “war” on the Electoral Commissioner and the chairman of the National Peace Council.

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Last modified on Thursday, 30 January 2020 04:50

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