Crime

Adams Mahama murder case: Accused pleads not guilty

Gregory Afoko and Alangdi Asabke, the two persons, who allegedly conspired to murder Adams Mahama, the former Upper East Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), have pleaded not guilty to the charges.

They were charged with conspiracy to commit crime and murder.

Consequently, a seven-member jury had been sworn in by the registrar of the court  presided by Justice Merley Afua Wood, a Court of Appeal judge, sitting with additional responsibility as a high court judge.

The accused rejected the three jurors pursuant to Section 251 of Act 30 of the Criminal Procedure Code 1960 which provides accused and their counsel the right to challenge the selection of three jurors without reasonable cause or explanation. 

Counsel for Afoko, Mr Stephen Sowah Charway, raised an objection on the jury, and urged the court to afford him the opportunity to conduct background checks on members of the jury, but the court overruled the objection, and said the law did not allow background checks on jury.

Mrs Marina Appiah Opare, Chief State Attorney, told the court that 19 witnesses would be invited to testify at court.

She said prosecution would give evidence to prove that Afoko and Asabke agreed with a common purpose to murder Mahama.

The Chief State Attorney stated that prosecution would prove that Mahama was dead, and that he died from harm, which was unlawfully caused by none other than the accused.

Meanwhile, the court had ordered the Bureau of National Investigation (BNI) where the two were being detained to allow Mr Andrew Kudzo Vortia, counsel for Asabke,  to meet his client, least one hour in five sessions.

The trial of Akofo began in 2016, and ended in 2019. The Attorney General entered nolle prosequi to end the trial, following the arrest of Asabke in Cote d’Ivoire.

Afoko was granted GH¢500,000 bail on March 14, 2019, by the Criminal Division “Five” of the Accra High Court, presided by Justice George Boadi, but the bail was rescinded by Justice Wood on Monday.

Afoko’s trial started in 2016 and was nearing completion after the prosecution and the defence had closed their cases.

On January 26, 2019, Afoko closed his case after he and John Ishmael Afoko, his brother had testified.

The facts are that Afoko was accused of killing Adam Mahama, Upper East NPP Regional Chairman.

On May 20, 2015, Mahama left home in the morning at about 7am for his construction site in his Toyota Pick-Up with registration number MR761-14.

He returned home at about 11pm and stopped his vehicle at the entrance of his house.

Prosecution said that as soon he stopped two men signalled for him to roll down the window of his vehicle which he did, and they allegedly poured acid on late Mahama and fled on a motorcycle.

The case had been adjourned to July 26.

BY MALIK SULLEMANA

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