Coup plotters’ trial: Court orders suspects to open defence

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The Accra High Court has directed the 10 people accused of plotting to overthrow the government to open their defence.

That was after the three-member panel of the court, presided over by Justice Afia Serwah Asare-Botwe, had dismissed a submission of ‘no case’ filed by the accused persons.

In its ruling yesterday, the court, which also had Justices Hafisata Amaleboba and Stephen Oppong as panel members, held that the submission of ‘no case’ had no merit because the prosecution had been able to establish a prima facie case against the 10 through its 13 witnesses.

The accused were, therefore, asked to answer the allegations raised by the prosecution.

Not guilty

The accused persons are in court for allegedly taking part in the activities of taking Action Ghana (TAG), a non-governmental organization (NGO) accused by the prosecution of planning to destabilize the country to take over the government.

They include Dr. Frederic Mac-Palm, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Dr Benjamin Agordzo, Colonel Samuel Kodzo Gameli, Bright Alan Debrah Ofosu (a fleet manager), Johannes Zikpi (a civilian employee of the Ghana Armed Forces) and Donya Kafui, aka Ezor (a blacksmith).

The rest — Corporal Seidu Abubakar, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Corporal Sylvester Akanpewon and Warrant Officer II Esther Saan Dekuwine — are all soldiers.

ACP Dr. Agordzo and Col Gameli have pleaded not guilty to abetment of high treason, while the rest have pleaded not guilty to high treason and conspiracy to commit high treason.

The prosecution has called 13 witnesses so far in the bid to prove its case.

Lawyers for the accused have also cross-examined the witnesses.

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