There were murmurs in an Accra High Court yesterday when it turned out that the soldiers caught in the plot to overthrow the Akufo-Addo-led NPP government demanded GH¢50,000 each as reward during and after the execution of the illegal constitutional action.
The demand was part of series of discussions held between the alleged coup plotters who had planned to use violent means to topple the government because they said democracy was not helping Ghana.
The court also heard how Dr. Frederick Yaw MacPalm, the medical doctor who is the alleged mastermind of the coup plot had promised the soldiers positions in his administration when he takes over power.
The prosecution’s third witness, Staff Sergeant Awarf Kojo Sule made the revelation when he took his turn to testify in the trial of the ten who are before the court on charges of high treason and abetment of high treason.
Led in his evidence by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Yvonne Atakora Obuobisa, the witness told the court that somewhere between April and May 2018 he was approached by one of the accused persons, WOII Esther Saan, who informed him about the intended plan to overthrow the government.
He then informed the court how Dr. MacPalm during their first meeting sold his idea for a coup, indicating that both the ruling NPP and the NDC had failed the youth of the country.
Staff Sergeant Sule told the court that he went to Col. Ansu (rtd.) and narrated what had transpired at the meeting, and the Colonel directed him to go and see Major General Omane Agyekum, who in turn called the Director of Defence Intelligence to discuss the issue.
The witness told the court that his superiors asked him to feign interest in the coup plot, and he was given audio and video recording devices to capture all his conversations with Dr. MacPalm and the group.
He narrated that he recorded his meetings with the group, and during one of those meetings, they discussed how to get other security personnel and soldiers to join the cause to overthrow the government.
He said they were also given Tecno mobile phones with SIM cards to aid their communications, and discussions were also held using Gota phones for their communications.
Staff Sergeant Sule told the court about how Dr. MacPalm had called him to prepare a sketch map of some key installations that will be targeted during the coup d’état.
“I gave the sketch to Mr. Bright to be given to Doctor. After he (MacPalm) reviewed the maps he raised a lot of concerns about the targeted places so he asked me to meet BB and the group so that we will re-draw the map and add some key installation areas like Air Force Base, Accra, Military Academy Training School Armoury at Teshie and Base Ammunition Depot, Tema.”
The court also heard how the coup plotters’ plan included what to do with the President and his officials once they are captured during the coup, and WOII Esther Saan suggested that the President should be eliminated when captured.
“We also discussed about where we are going to send the President and his administrators when they are captured. I suggested that I have an uncompleted building at Adenta Housing and WOII Saan suggested again that ‘that man must be killed’,” the court heard.
“My Lords, at this meeting GH¢50 MoMo (mobile money) was sent to myself, Mr. Bright, Sylvester Akanpeon and WOII Esther Saan’s MoMo numbers by Mr. Bright who told us that it was Doctor who asked that the money be given to us to buy credit on our Tecno mobile phones so that we will not use our main mobile phones to communicate,” he added.
Staff Sergeant Sule also testified about the group’s plans to acquire weapons to facilitate their plans, and this included Dr. MacPalm disclosing that he had some police officers at the Kotobabi Police Station and some in the Eastern Region who had promised to give him assault rifles.
He told the court how Dr. MacPalm recruited Donya Kafui from Alavanyo in the Volta Region to manufacture pistols and Improvised Explosives Devices (IEDs) for the ‘operation’.
H said Dr. MacPalm gave Donya a total of GH¢7,000 for the manufacturing materials and Donya managed to manufacture ten pistols and 22 IEDs.
The court heard how Dr. MacPalm, Donya Kafui and the witness went to a beach to test two of the pistols which led to the arrest by soldiers from the Southern Command at Teshie.
The witness told the court that his video and audio recordings of meetings of the group were downloaded onto an external hard drive which was tendered, and would be played today when the court resumes sitting.
BY Gibril Abdul Razak