AG fails to produce witness in Ofosu Ampofo, Deputy case

pThe office of the Attorney General has failed to produce the first prosecution witness in the case, in which the National Chairman and the Deputy Communication Director of National Democratic Congress (NDC) have been charged with conspiracy to cause harm and assault of public officers.

The trial of the duo- Samuel Ofosu Ampofo and Anthony Kweku Boahen, National Chairman and Deputy Communication Director, respectively, was set to begin on July 8, 2019, at the Accra High Court.

However, Mr Asiamah Sampong, a senior state attorney, prosecuting, told the court that the witness was indisposed.

At proceedings yesterday, Dr Abdul Basit Aziz Bamba, counsel for Mr Boahen told the court that he filed an application urging the court to strike out the charge of conspiracy to cause harm against his client.

In moving his application, Dr Bamba said the prosecution failed to provide the essential ingredients of the charge of conspiracy.

Mr Sampong opposed the application and said it is vexatious, unmeritorious and abuse of the court process.

Ruling on the application, Justice Samuel Asiedu said the narrations in the fact sheet remained mere allegations which ought to be proved in accordance with law.

The judge took the view that the application sought to invite the court to assess the case of the prosecution even before evidence were provided.

The accused were arraigned on April 16 for allegedly inciting communicators of the party to attack Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, and Chairman of the National Peace Council.

On June 7, 2019, the court dismissed a similar application filed by Mr Tony Lithur, counsel for Mr Ampofo.

In his application, Mr Tony Lithur, counsel for the NDC Chairman, asked the court presided by Justice Samuel Asiedu, to strike out the assault charge against Mr Ampofo, arguing that the charges against his client were defective.

Mr Lithur contended that prosecution should be made to provide particulars of the charges, however, the court held that the charges were grounded in law and that they are not fatal to the trial.

The accused, who were granted GH¢100.000 bail each with a surety, were said to have been secretly recorded on their plot of attack, on the target persons in an audio, which had since gone viral.

When they were arraigned for the first time on April 16, 2019, Mr Lithur told the court that his client could not speak about the alleged leaked tape because it was doctored.

He said the invasion of his client’s privacy relates to the constitutional breach of Mr Ampofo’s rights.

Dr Bamba said his client denied the charges filed against him, and added that Article 19(2) (c) of the 1992 Constitution provides that Mr Boahen was innocent until he is proven guilty by the court.

He contended that the charges against the Deputy Communications Officer of the NDC were not grounded in the law.

Miss Gloria Afua Akuffo, the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, prosecuting, said, Mr Boahen faces only a charge of conspiracy to cause harm, while his colleague was charged with all the three counts.


BY MALIK SULLEMANA

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