Monday, November 08, 2010

Ya Na Suspects File No Case

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By William Yaw Owusu

Saturday November 6, 2010
The 15 men standing trial for their involvement in the murder of Ya Na Yakubu Andani II, overlord of Dagbon have indicated to the Accra Fast Track High Court trying them that they intend to file a ‘Submission of Case” because the prosecution has failed to establish a case against each of them.

This follows the announcement by Anthony Rexford Wiredu, one of the Principal State Attorneys handling the case that the prosecution had rested its case and called on the court to order the accused persons to open their defense.

During four conservative sittings of the court, the prosecution failed to bring two prospective witnesses that it had announced to the court that it was inviting to testify but yesterday when trial commenced, Mr. Wiredu said the prosecution had closed its case.

“My Lord, we are here to announce to the court that we have rested our case,” he emphasized and the court, presided over by Justice E K Ayebi of the Court of Appeal asked “are you sure you have rested your case?” to which Mr. Wiredu answered in the affirmative.

The prosecutor then tendered in evidence the statutory statements of the accused persons when they were taken to the Adjabeng District Magistrate Court in Accra for committal to the high court for trial and the defense team led by Mr. Atta Akyea said they have no objection to it.

Mr. Wiredu had said it was in conformity with Part 4 of the Criminal and other Offences Act, citing Sections 182, 184 and 187 as well as the 6th Schedule of 118 to support his argument.

When the prosecutor took his seat, Mr. Atta Akyea said “we wish to bring to the attention of the court for your consideration a submission of no case.”

He appealed to the court to assist them to get all the proceedings of the trial saying “we have got a few but they are not up to date.”

Immediately defense counsel made the submission, Mr. Wiredu started another argument saying it was the prerogative of the judge to say whether or not there should be a submission of no case and not for the defense to decide.

He cited a case titled: Republic Versus Akosa in the 1967 Ghana Law Report but the judge reminded him that the case being cited had been reviewed in subsequent cases and asked to prosecution to allow the application because they (prosecution) would also have the right to reply.

The court then ordered the registrar to make available to the defense all the proceedings of the trial before November 12, 2010 and adjourned the case to Tuesday, November 23, 2010.

The prosecution called 12 witnesses in the case.

All the 15 accused persons, except Zakaria Yakubu aka Zakaria Forest, the seventh suspect who is currently at large, were in court.

They have all pleaded not guilty to conspiracy, with Forest (A7) facing an additional charge of murder.

They are currently on remand except Iddrisu Iddi aka Mbadugu, due to old age.
Those on trial are Iddrisu Iddi aka Mbadugu, Alhaji Baba Abdulai Iddrisu aka Zohe, Kwame Alhassan aka Achiri, Mohamadu Abdulai aka Samasama, Sayibu Mohammed, Alhassan Braimah and Alhaji Mohammed Habib Tijani, 45, former District Chief Executive (DCE) of Yendi as second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth accused persons respectively.

The rest are Baba Ibrahim aka Baba Zey, Alhassan Mohammed aka Mohammed Cheampon, Mohammed Mustapha, Shani Imoro, Yakubu Yusif aka Leftee and Hammed Abukari Yussif and Abdul Razak Yussif aka Nyaa as 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th accused persons respectively.

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