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Stephen Boafo, also known as Fiifi Boafo, the host of ‘National Agenda’, the morning show on Oman FM in Accra, yesterday appeared before an Accra Circuit Court to tell the court what transpired the day Kennedy Agyapong made a statement on air, which the state says incited tribal hatred.
The witness gave evidence in a court presided over Ebenzer Osei-Darko where Mr Agyapong, Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin North, is being tried for provocation to riot and offensive conduct.
Led in evidence-in chief by Rexford Wiredu, the principal state attorney, Mr. Boafo said he knew the accused person as an MP, adding that even though Agyapong was the owner of Kencity Media, of which Oman FM was a subsidiary, Mrs. Stella Agyapong was his boss, not the MP.
He said he was a broadcaster and the host of Oman FM’s morning show which usually discussed newspaper headlines and politics, adding that the programme also had a phone-in segment.
According to him, on April 13, 2012, in the course of the programme, he and his production team were told that the accused person wanted to make a contribution on the programme on the attack at Odododiodioo during the voter registration; he allowed Agyapong to do so.
He said he later gave a statement to the police on the Odododiodioo attack which the state wanted to be tendered to the court in evidence but Nii Ayikoi Otoo, counsel for the MP, objected on grounds that a proper foundation had not been laid for the statement to be tendered.
The court upheld the objection so the witness continued his evidence saying he did not remember every detail of what happened but said he remembered asking the MP whether he was declaring war due to what happened at Odododiodioo, to which the MP answered in the affirmative.
Boafo noted that he asked the MP again whether he was declaring war, and the MP said he was and that the war was starting from that moment.
He however denied that he gave a CD recording of the MP’s contribution to the morning show to the police but Mr. Wiredu told the court he would make the CD available to the court.
Under cross-examination by Nii Ayikoi Otoo, the witness said he was not the only person at the studio as there were two other colleagues with him on that day.
He admitted that the MP called into the programme and was not at the studio, adding that the studio was not a place where everybody could just walk in except persons who had adverts or had appointments.
The case has been adjourned to November 13, 2012.
Kennedy Agyapong is standing trial in connection with the use of intemperate language on Accra-based Oman FM, which the state believed was meant to incite tribal hatred.
Atta Akyea, at the last hearing, prayed the court to grant permission to the MP to travel abroad for a medical check-up. The trial judge consequently adjourned the matter.
The MP has pleaded not guilty to provocation of riot and offensive conduct in breach of the peace.
He was initially charged with attempted treason genocide and terrorism but freed after the state attempted to have his trial at the high court started afresh.
He is on self-cognizance bail.
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