Defence counsel challenges capacity of prosecutor in Asabee case
Accra, Jan. 17, GNA - A motion on notice challenging the capacity of Mr Anthony Gyambiby, Chief State Attorney prosecuting in the case of Stephen Asamoah Boateng, former Minister of Information and National Orientation and others has been filed.
Mr Augustine Obuor, one of the defence counsels informed the Fast Track High Court after the trial bounced back on Tuesday.
Mr Obuor is seeking a declaration that Mr Gyambiby did not have the capacity to appear before the court as a Chief State Attorney and State Attorney to prosecute after attaining 60 years without appropriate authorisation.
He contended that Mr Gyambiby in 2007 attained the age of 60 and therefore retired from public service.
However, when the case was called, Mr Rexford Wiredu, Principal State Attorney told the court that he had asked Mr Gyambiby to do some write up so that he could respond to the motion.
Mr Wiredu said he had not received the write up and pleaded with the court to give him some time to respond to the motion.
In the case of Mr Obuor, Mr Wiredu said he had not received the State’s response to the motion he (Mr Obour) filed.
The court presided over by Mr Justice Charles Quist therefore adjourned the matter to January 24.
In an affidavit in support of the motion sworn by Mr D.A.Y. Sampong the fifth accused person in the case, said Mr Gyambiby was born on November 28, 1947 in Ghana.
Mr Sampong said the prosecutor was 64 years old and that in 2007, Mr Gyambiby attained the age of 60 and therefore retired from public service.
He stated that Mr Gyambiby could be engaged on contract basis by the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General Department through the Public Service Commission as a Consultant or contractor based on contract but not as a Chief State Attorney.
Mr Sampong said Mr Gyambiby ought to have indicated to the court that he is on contract and ought to have shown the court the contract from the Public Service Commission before prosecuting the matter.
He said Mr Gyambiby ought to show the court his four years contract documents to indicate his capacity to appear before the court and prosecute since he had attained 60.
The fifth accused person said Mr Gyambiby could only be appointed as a consultant in the office and not as a private prosecutor
Stephen Asamoah-Boateng and others are being held over renovations undertaken at the Ministry.
Asamoah-Boateng his wife, Zulieka Jennifer Lorwia and six other public officers have been charged with conspiracy to defraud the State.
Also in court is a non-legal entity firm, Supreme Procurement Agencies Limited.
The accused persons are alleged to have conspired to defraud the State of GHc86,915.85 in renovation works undertaken at the Ministerial Block of the Ministry during Asamoah-Boateng’s tenure of office.
Other accused persons are Frank Agyekum, Former Deputy Minister of Information and National Orientation, Dominic A. Sampong, Former Acting Chief Director, Ministry of Information and National Orientation, Kwabena Denkyira, Former Director of Finance and Administration of the Ministry, Prosper Arku of the non-legal entity firm, and Yasmine Domua, a businesswoman.
They have all pleaded not guilty and admitted to GHc10,000 bail each with a surety.