Contempt application against NPP National Chairman dismissed

An Accra high court yesterday dismissed the contempt application against Mr Freddie Blay, the Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).

The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) filed the application, and urged the court to commit Mr Blay for contempt of court.

However, in a ruling, the court presided by Justice George Koomson said the Commission had failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

CHRAJ has opened investigations into a complaint it received from Coalition for Social Justice, concerning Mr Blay’s purchase of 275 buses for the NPP, in the run-up to the party’s delegate conference in the Eastern Region in 2018.

According to the Coalition, the purchase of the buses amounted to vote buying, which should be probed by CHRAJ.

CHRAJ, in investigating the matter wrote to Mr Blay two months ago, requesting his response to the petition, and also asked him to produce the custom declaration covering duties paid for the vehicles.

This information, according to CHRAJ, was needed so that it could proceed on the probe.

CHRAJ said neither Mr Blay nor his lawyers responded to their request, compelling it to file an application seeking to commit the politician for contempt.  

On June 8, 2019 counsel for CHRAJ, Bete Duku, told the court all attempts to serve Mr Blay who is also the Board Chairman of Ghana National Petroleum Corporation was unsuccessful.

Mr Blay had refuted claims that the buses were procured to influence delegates ahead of the NPP’s conference.

He said the party secured a bank facility to purchase the buses, which he claims would be managed by State Transport Company (STC).

BY MALIK SULLEMANA

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