Treason felony: SC dismisses Barker-Vormawor’s application against judge ruling

Vormawor Oliver Barker - Vormawor

Tue, 14 Feb 2023 Source: kasapafmonline.com

A five member panel of the Supreme Court has dismissed an application filed by Oliver Barker-Vormawor challenging a ruling of the High Court not to quash his Bill of Indictment.

#TheFixtheCountry Convener who is a subject matter of two charges of treason felony had his two applications at the High Court granted in part.

Justice Mary Maame Ekue Yanzuh, the High Court Judge had on November 11, 2022 ordered the Prosecutors to amend the particulars of offence which his lawyers claimed sin against the rules of duplicity and multiplicity.

While the High Court agreed with his lawyers on the duplicitous and the multiplicities claims, the court did not strike out the Bill of indictment.

Dissatisfied with the November 11, 2022 ruling of the High Court, his lawyers led by Justice Srem-Sai filed an application for judicial review in the nature of Certiorari at the Supreme Court.

But the panel chaired by Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah after listening to the parties ruled that the alleged error committed by the High Court judge was committed within the jurisdiction of the court.

The panel said the High Court judge was right in ordering the prosecution to amend the particulars of offence.

Consequently, the panel dismissed the application.


Counsel for the Applicant, Justice Srem-Sai while moving the motion on notice for judicial review in the nature of Certiorari to quash a part of the High Court’s ruling on November 11, 2022 said his client was charged with two counts of treason felony.

He added that, the particulars of the offence however alleged the charges of treason felony and high treason at the same time.

This he said sins against the rules of duplicity and multiplicity which required that the bill of indictment is quashed and the process starts again.

AG’s response

Hilda Craig, a Principal State Attorney who represented the Attorney General opposed to the application.

She contended that the applicant has not properly invoked the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court adding that for the court to grant such as application, 'the errors committed should be fundamental.'

The Principal State Attorney argued that the High Court acted within its jurisdiction to order the prosecution to amend the charge sheet.

She said the charge is a treason felony and the particulars clearly stated so only that the prosecution added, “violent overthrow of the constitution.”

Hilda Craig said the court has ordered the prosecution to delete that from the records which was only an 'addition.'

To this, she said the trial judge did not assume excess of jurisdiction and prayed that the application be dismissed.


Per the application, the applicant was seeking An order of certiorari to issue to the High Court (Criminal Division 3), Accra, to bring up to this Court to have quashed the part of its ruling dated November 11, 2022.

“Any other orders or remedies that this honourable Court deems fit,” the applicant sought.

“The grounds upon which the application is based is that the learned High Court judge committed an error of jurisdiction when she (as a High Court) committed the Accused Person to stand trial before the High Court.

“The Applicant contends that an indictment which is either duplicitous or multiplicitious is incurably bad and necessarily occasions a substantial miscarriage of justice,” the Applicant contended.

For a process in the criminal procedure to be nullified, it must be occasion a substantial miscarriage of justice. This is provided for in Section 406(1) of the Criminal and other Offences (Procedure) Act, 1960, (Act 30).

Source: kasapafmonline.com