Coup trial: Court dismisses submission of no case; orders accused persons to open defence

Dr Frederick Mac Palm Dr Fredrick Yao Mac Palm is the alleged mastermind of a plot to overthrow government

Tue, 26 Jul 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Prosecution concludes case presentation in coup trial

Accused persons file for submission of no case in coup trial

Court orders accused persons to open defence in coup trial

A three-member High Court panel has dismissed a submission of no case filed by some ten persons accused of plotting to topple the Government of Ghana.

The court, presided by Justices Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe with support from Justices Hafisata Amaleboba and Stephen Oppong on Monday, July 25, 2022, also ordered the accused persons to open their defence.

According to the court, the submission of no case had no merit as the prosecution had established a prima facie case against the accused persons through its 13 witnesses.

The court has therefore ordered the accused persons to file a list of all the witnesses they expect to testify in the case by September 19, 2022. They are also ordered to file if they would require the assurance of the court to issue witness summons or subpoenas.

The accused persons are also to file their witness statements and other relevant documents they intend to rely on to advance their defence.

The ten accused persons have been charged for allegedly taking part in the activities of Take Action Ghana (TAG), a non-governmental organisation (NGO) accused by the prosecution of planning to destabilise the country to take over the government.

The accused persons include Dr Frederic Yao Mac-Palm, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Dr Benjamin Agordzo, Colonel Samuel Kodzo Gameli, Bright Alan Debrah Ofosu (a fleet manager), Johannes Zikpi (a civilian employee of the Ghana Armed Forces) and Donya Kafui, aka Ezor (a blacksmith).

The rest are Corporal Seidu Abubakar, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Corporal Sylvester Akanpewon and Warrant Officer II Esther Saan Dekuwine, all soldiers.

ACP Dr Agordzo and Col. Gameli have been charged with abetment of high treason, while the rest have also been charged with high treason and conspiracy to commit high treason.

All ten accused persons have pleaded not guilty.

During the presentation of their case, the prosecution called 13 witnesses who testified and were cross-examined by lawyers for the accused persons.

The prosecution adduced that the accused persons used TAG as a platform to mobilise in order to destabilise the country and overthrow the government.

According to the prosecution, Dr Mac-Palm, who is accused of being the mastermind of the plot, along with Kafui and Debrah, had planned to kidnap the President, the Vice-President, the Speaker of Parliament and the Chief of the Defence Staff and force the President to announce his overthrow.

“Again, there were discussions on whether or not to kill the President in the process of overthrowing the government,” the prosecution said.

In the case of ACP Agordzo, the prosecution said he joined a WhatsApp platform of TAG created by Dr Mac-Palm, where the group discussed a planned demonstration that was likened to the Arab Spring.

The prosecution, in presenting its case, advanced that ACP Agordzo donated GH¢2,000 to TAG to aid its cause and also drafted a speech for Dr Mac-Palm to be read at the planned demonstration by TAG.

The hearing of the case is scheduled to resume on October 10, 2022.

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Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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