‘Burger’ MP’s Review Motion Today


An application by lawyers for deposed Member of Parliament for Assin North, James Gyakye Quayson asking an Accra High Court to reconsider its decision to hear his criminal trial in which he is charged for perjury and deceit on day-to-day basis, has been adjourned to today. 


The court, presided over by Justice Mary Yanzuh, last week ruled that it will from yesterday, June 20, 2023, hear the case on daily basis as requested by the Attorney General and Minister for Justice, Godfred Yeboah Dame. 


Mr. Dame made the request after Justin Pwavra Teriwaja, counsel for Mr. Quayson prayed the court to adjourn the matter beyond June 27 to allow Mr. Quayson time to prepare for the by-election in Assin North.


He said the election is a national assignment, hence urged the court to waive its already agreed June 20 date in order to give Mr. Quayson a fair chance to contest the election.


The request was opposed by Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, who said the by-election is not a national assignment and rhetorically asked “who gave him a national assignment?”


He said it was Mr. Quayson’s selfish quest to contest in the by-election, knowing very well that he is facing a criminal trial and the possible outcome is that he could be convicted and sentenced to prison.


Mr. Dame said the defence counsel introducing political matters into the trial was extraneous, adding that “it is in the interest of justice for the matter to be dealt with expeditiously.”

He, therefore, prayed the court to set dates that would ensure the case is heard on day-to-day basis.


But lawyers for Mr. Quayson filed an application for review asking the trial court to reconsider its decision in the interest of justice and fairness. 


The application was scheduled to be heard yesterday but Deputy Attorney General, Alfred Tuah-Yeboah, told the court that the prosecution did not have enough time to study the affidavit in support of the motion, hence urged the court to adjourn the case to today. 


He, however, urged the court to allow the defence to continue their cross-examination of the first prosecution witness, Richard Takyi-Mensah, while the application is dealt with the next day. 


Tsatsu Tsikata, lead counsel for Mr. Quayson, opposed the request for the continuation of the cross-examination and asked the court to deal with the review motion before continuing with the hearing of the substantive matter. 


Justice Yanzuh, after listening to both sides, adjourned the case to today to hear the review motion after which a decision would be taken on the substantive case. 


There was heavy presence of leadership of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and some former government appointees under the John Mahama administration in court yesterday to support Mr. Quayson. 


Mr. Quayson has been charged, among others, for deceiving the Ministry of Foreign Affairs by making a false statement that he did not have a dual citizenship in order to acquire a Ghanaian passport.


He has been charged with five counts of deceit of public officer, forgery of passport of travel certificate, knowingly making a false statutory statement, perjury and false declaration of office. 


Mr. Quayson, who was booted out of Parliament by the Supreme Court, could be sent to prison for up to ten years if found guilty of perjury, a second degree felony, as the prosecution pushes to establish his guilt.


 BY Gibril Abdul Razak