Your case against Kennedy Agyapong involved criminal acts – Amidu tells Anas

Former Special Prosecutor Martin Amidu has responded to the claim by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas that the trial judge who sat on the defamation case against Assin Central Member of Parliament Kennedy Agyapong acted as though he Anas was standing a criminal trial.

Martin Amidu said the case contained criminal elements hence the judge was right to make a pronouncement to that effect.

Anas in his reaction to the judgment said a careful study of the court’s decision indicated that the judge moved into the arena of criminal prosecution.

“My team and I and the lawyers have carefully studied the judgment delivered by the court and we are unanimous that the judge made an overreach and descended into the arena and made criminal pronouncements about me as If I was standing a criminal trial.

“He also justified the MP accusing me of the murder of JB Danquah, murder of 20 Chinese nationals. We are filing an appeal because there was no evidence provided,” Anas said in a video recording responding to the judgment.

The Accra High Court on Wednesday, March 15 dismissed the GH¢25 million defamation suit against Kennedy Ohene Agyapong brought by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

Woyongo bows out of active party politics

The judge, Justice Eric Baah, held that Anas Aremeyaw Anas failed to prove that Ken Agyapong defamed him by airing the documentary – “Who watches the watchman” – but rather, the documentary exposed shady deals that Anas and his associates were involved in.

This was after Anas, in 2018, sued the New Patriotic Party (NPP) lawmaker for allegedly defaming him.

Anas prayed to the court to award GH¢25 million against Mr Agyapong to compensate him for the defamatory material published against him by the MP.

The court concluded that what Anas is engaged in is not investigative journalism but rather “investigative terrorism” and that Agyapong was justified to call Anas “a blackmailer, corrupt, an extortionist, and evil”.

“I find the claims by the plaintiff [Anas Aremeyaw Anas) meritless and they are hereby dismissed,” Justice Baah ruled.

Reacting to this matter in a statement, Mr Martin Amidu who is also a former Attorney General said “Anas A. Anas was not compelled by the judiciary to bring an action for defamation before any level of the court system against Kennedy Agyepong. He consciously and voluntarily chose to do so in the expectation that he may prevail at the trial.

Bimbilla killings: Family seek justice for woman killed by gunman in husband's room

“Any party losing in the trial court has a right of appeal if he formed the view that there were appealable grounds against the decision of the trial court. The right of appeal is exercisable by both parties up to the Supreme Court provided they guide against abusing the process of the court with spurious actions and appeals. But a losing party or his cohorts who impute partiality or impropriety to the judge or court commit the offence of scandalizing the trial judge, the court, and the administration of justice as an institution and are in contempt of Court whether or not the losing party subsequently files an appeal against the judgment. The decision of Supreme Court in the case of REPUBLIC v MENSA-BONSU & OTHERS, EX PARTE ATTORNEY-GENERAL [1995- 96] 1 GLR 377 governs the situation.

“Anas A. Anas, a lawyer, and the founding partner in Cromwell Gray LLP with William
Agyebeng, now the Special Prosecutor, and his cohorts appeared to assume that when a trial goes against one’s expectations, the trial judge must be vilified and attacked as an excuse for filing an appeal.

“The plaintiff was reported to have said, amongst other things, about the judgment that went against him that: ‘My team of lawyers and I have carefully studied the judgment delivered by the court and we are unanimous that the judge made an overreach and descended into the arena and made a criminal pronouncement about me as if I was standing a criminal trial.’

Nyantakyi desperate to become credible with ‘manufactured’ stories – Anas

“The civil action for defamation which Anas A. Anas voluntarily brought before the trial court involved criminal acts which were the issue in a civil trial and the trial judge was bound to make determinations on them in the civil trial. How could the trial judge do that without using the rules of evidence on the burden of proof which any trial court is bound to consider in making its findings on the evidence?

“The impression that by performing his judicial functions in exercise of the judicial power
guaranteed under the 1992 Constitution the trial judge had descended into the arena of
conflict is an attack on the independence and impartiality of the judge and constitutes a
scurrilous abuse of the court. One who has confidence in his cause will quietly go on appeal
without making any political fussy to save face.”

By Laud Nartey||Ghana


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here