Court dismisses Ato Forson, Jakpa’s four applications in Ambulance case

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The presiding judge in the ambulance trial, Justice Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe, has rejected each of the four applications that Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson and Richard Jakpa submitted.

The applications for a stay of proceedings, an injunction, an investigation into the AG’s behavior, and an order of mistrial were declared to be without legal basis by the Court in its separate findings.

Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe, the presiding judge, declared in a separate finding that the court lacked the legal authority to order an investigation into the prosecution’s actions while the case was still pending.

“Maybe another forum and not the court,” the court suggested.

The current minority leader, Dr. Ato Forson, and businessman Richard Jakpa are on trial for a number of offenses, including intentionally causing the state to lose €2.37 million on a contract to buy 200 ambulances for the Ministry of Health.

The case was postponed until today, Thursday, June 6, 2024, by the trial judge, who decided to rule on the four distinct applications that were submitted to the court on Tuesday, June 4.

In essence, the motions are asking for an injunction to stop the two accused parties’ trial because to accusations made against Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Attorney General.

An order of injunction barring the Attorney General or his office from pursuing their client further is being requested by Dr. Ato Forson, Member of Parliament (MP) for Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam, and his legal team, lead by Dr. Abdul Aziz Basit Bamba.

In order to oppose the court’s earlier ruling allowing them to begin cross-examination of Mr. Jakpa, the third accused before the Attorney General, he is also requesting a mistrial, which aims to terminate the proceedings, as well as a stay of proceedings awaiting an appeal.

Mr. Richard Jakpa is requesting that the allegations against him be dropped on the grounds that they infringe upon his right to a fair trial.

Lawyers for the former deputy finance minister also backed Jakpa’s proposal, filing an affidavit in support of Jakpa’s application.

They are requesting that the accusation of his causing financial loss to the state be dropped.

The third accused person’s claims that Godfred Dame, the Attorney General, met with him and persuaded him to implicate the first accused, Ato Forson, in order to obtain his conviction, are the basis for the applications before Justice Asare-Botwe, a Justice of the Court of Appeal.

The Attorney General has fiercely fought the applications, calling them frivolous and that “the accused persons are bent on using any means necessary, fair, or foul, to abort their legitimate prosecution for crimes committed against the Republic, and must not be aided in that illegitimate endeavor through a grant of the instant application.”

Additionally, the opposition affidavit argued that it is in the public interest for the matter to be resolved definitively using the reliable evidence that the court has in front of it.

The application was denied viva voce (oral submissions) by Justice Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe, a Justice of the Court of Appeal serving as an additional High Court judge.

She said that the State and the attorneys had submitted enough paperwork for the court to review and rule on.

Judge Asare-Botwe added that the court will examine Richard Jakpa’s audio tape, attaching it to his application, with a focus on its admissibility and endorsement.

Source: Ghanatodayonline.com

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