Crime

8 secessionists granted GH¢800,000 bail

Eight out of the nine members of Homeland Study Group, including a soldier, accused of attempting to declare Volta Region, as an independent state, were yesterday granted GH¢800,000 bail by the Accra High Court.

The accused, Bese Amedeus Akorli, Blay Kaku Freeman, Nkpe Tornyie Kudjo and Thompson Tsigbe, were asked to report to the police twice every Monday and Thursday until otherwise directed.

The rest are Agbenyegah Akudzi, Dzereke Kofi, Benjamin Agbozdagah and Staff Sergeant Kgogli Samuel Kwabla.

Each of them is to produce two sureties, one to be justified.

The accused had pleaded not guilty to treason felony, offensive conduct and unlawful military training.

A three-member panel of judges, presided by Justice Jerome Nkrumah, further directed that the investigator in the case to verify the physical location of all the accused before the execution of the bail.

Mr Charles K. Kudzordzi, the leader of the group, was on May 8, granted GH¢250,000 bail with two sureties.

Lead counsel for the accused, Mr T.P Akamba, in his application for bail for his clients, argued that the accused were innocent until proven guilty.

He said the offence for which the accused were arraigned were bailable and reminded the court of the decision of the Supreme Court in the Martin Kpebu vs Attorney-General (A-G) Supreme Court of Ghana Law Report (SCLR-2015-2017).

Mr T.P Akamba said accused were Ghanaian citizens and would not abscond from justice.

The prosecutor, Mr Fred Awindago, did not oppose the bail application, but urged the court to consider a bail condition to ensure that accused avail themselves to stand trial. 

The facts according to the prosecution are that, the accused were arrested at a meeting on May 5, 2019.

Mr  Awindago, said the accused planned to declare Volta, Oti and North East regions as independent state on May 19, 2019.

Prosecution said Sgt Kwabla gave advance warning to the group to hide their weapons as a joint police- military investigation was underway.

The court heard that the group was formed in 1994 with the objective to instigate the people of the Eastern Corridor of Ghana to secede from Ghana to form a country called Western Togoland.

He said the activities of the group got to the attention of the police and Mr K. Kudzordzi was arrested and arraigned before the Ho High Court in the Volta Region.

Prosecution said the accused was bonded to be of good behaviour for six months, however, the group continued to engage in such activities until the members were arrested on May 5, 2019.

Mr  Awindago said that during interrogation accused maintained that the said part of Ghana does not form part of the Republic of Ghana.

He said items with inscription ‘9th May is our day’, and ‘A Citizen of Western Togoland’ as well as translations of a message sent by the soldier were retrieved.

The case had been adjourned to July 1, 2019.

BY MALIK SULLEMANA

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