Final hurdle cleared for Ofosu Ampofo trial to begin Dec 18

An Accra High Court has dismissed an application seeking to strike out a witness statement filed by the state in the case between NDC National Chairman Samuel Ofosu Ampofo and Deputy Communication Officer Kweku Boahen, on one hand, and the state. According to the Court, though prosecution filed the witness statement after the case management, it will not be injurious to the accused. Lawyers for the two accused argued that the state was late in filing the witness statement for one Listowell Fodjour because it did that after the case management conference. Counsel for the accused further argued that filing the witness statement after the case management conference was injurious to their client and prejudicial since the case has not commenced. Aziz Bamba said it was irregular, incompetent and not in compliance with the directive from the Supreme Court that prosecution must furnish the accused all documents to be relied on for trial. He therefore urged the court to strike out the application because it was filed without any explanation. Prosecution admitted it was an irregularity which the court can waive and admit for trial. Director of Public Prosecution Yvonne Atakora Obuobisah said they had filed the witness statement because of the direction to disclose all information to the other party, a practice in criminal matters. She urged the court to admit it since hearing has not commenced. But in his ruling, Justice Samuel Asiedu said prosecution did no wrong because hearing has not commenced and no witness has been presented. He therefore dismissed the application fixing December 18 for hearing to commence. Mr Ofosu Ampofo and Mr Boahen are facing trial over a leaked tape said to have come from the NDC Chairman’s meeting with some communication officers. On the tape, the voice instigated the members to take the Chairman of the National Peace Council as well as the Electoral Commissioner to the cleaners.

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By Godfred Tanam||Ghana  ]]>