Supreme Court judgement on non bailable crimes could affect victims

A leading member of the Convention People’s Party, Kwame Jantuah, has raised questions about the Supreme Court’s ruling on non-bailable offences, saying the perspective of victims were not taken into consideration.

According to Mr. Jantuah, the court’s decision could let people take our laws for granted by committing offences that previously were non bailable.

He said “Ghanaians would feel even if I go and kill, I can get bail… One of the most difficult crimes to prove is rape, it’s a very difficult crime to prove.

“If you’ve given the person who has raped my daughter bail without completing the process of proving rape and he absconds, what happens?”

Speaking on TV3’s New Day, Mr. Jantuah said, if perpetrators are left to go, they could come back to harm victims or their families where he indicated that “the person who was initially arrested for committing a crime and now to be released on bail could go and get people to harass the victim and their family… We’ve heard it so many times.”

The Supreme Court in a landmark judgment declared that crimes that were previously non-bailable including treason, rape, armed robbery, murder etc are now bailable effective Thursday May 5.

There were debates at various public fronts over the decision with many lawyers clearly divided over the decision.

Whereas some lawyers applauded the Supreme Court for their judgment with a five-two majority, others argued the decision has the potential of increasing the country’s crime rate.

Mr. Jantuah, however, seemed to have sided with those who disagreed with the judgement asking “at what point do you grant bail? Is it at the point of reporting, is it at the point of holding the person at the point of the duration of time given?

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“If at that point the necessary checks that need to be done on the young girl who has been raped has not been done, do you still keep the person or you release the person?”

The public debate still rages on over the ruling.

By Martin Asiedu-Dartey||Ghana
Twitter: @NewsyMartin