The Attorney General’s Department is expected to call 19 witnesses in the trial of 10 persons arrested for allegedly plotting to overthrow the NPP government.
The ten, made up of civilians, soldiers and a senior police officer, are before an Accra High Court facing charges of conspiracy, abetment of crime and high treason.
Yesterday, at the case management process, the prosecution disclosed that it will be calling a total of 19 witnesses to prove the charges levelled against the accused persons.
To this effect, a three-member panel of an Accra High Court presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Asare-Botwe adjourned the matter to June 8, 2021, to commence the trial.
Meanwhile, counsel for six of the accused persons, Victor Kodzogah Adawudu, has withdrawn his application for bail variation after the court drew his attention to certain infractions on practice directions.
The court on Saturday, April 24, granted Dr. Frederick Yao Mac-Palm, who is suspected to be the mastermind; Donya Kafui, aka Ezor, a local weapon manufacturer; Bright Allan Debrah Ofosu, aka Bright Alan Yeboah or BB, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Lance Corporal Sylvester Akapewu, Lance Corporal Seidu Abubakar, WO II Esther Saan Dekuwine aka Mama Gee and Johannes Zikpi, a civilian employee with the Ghana Armed Forces, GH¢2 million bail with two sureties each to be justified.
The court also granted ACP Dr. Benjamin Agordzo of the Ghana Police Service and Col. Samuel Kojo Gameli of the Ghana Armed Forces, GH¢1 million bail with two sureties each, one of whom is to be justified.
All the accused persons were also ordered to report to the Director of National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) every Monday and Thursday of the week as well as deposit their passports at the registry of the court.
The two senior security officers are also to deposit their passports at the court’s registry as well as report to their Commanders on Mondays and Thursdays.
The 10 persons were first put on trial in 2019 for allegedly planning to destabilise the country and overthrow the government.
They were initially charged with treason felony, abetment of treason felony and possession of firearms, ammunitions and explosives without lawful authority.
But they were re-arrested by the NIB on Friday, April 23, 2021, following new intelligence into the case and charged with high treason, which is the highest criminal offence in the country.
Per the new charges, Dr. Mac-Palm, Donya Kafui aka Ezor, Bright Allan Debrah Ofosu aka Bright Alan Yeboah or BB, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Lance Corporal Sylvester Akapewu, Lance Corporal Seidu Abubakar, WO II Esther Saan Dekuwine aka Mama Gee and Johannes Zikpi, a civilian employee with the Ghana Armed Forces, are facing two counts of conspiracy to commit high treason and high treason.
ACP Dr. Benjamin Agordzo and Col. Gameli on the other hand have been charged with two counts of abetment of high treason each.
The accused persons all pleaded not guilty to the charges of high treason, conspiracy to commit high treason and abetment of high treason.
The facts of the case indicate how the accused persons who are members of an NGO called Take Action Ghana (TAG) held several meetings to discuss the recruitment of more soldiers, the acquisition of weapons and bullet proof gears, development of sketch maps of key installations and facilities of the state to be attacked during their planned takeover of government.
The facts state that the accused persons were planning to capture the President and some key individuals in the country and also how to force the President to announce his overthrow once he was captured.
The accused persons were again said to have contemplated in their discussions whether or not to kill the President in the process of overthrowing the government.
According to the facts, the accused persons in furtherance of the plot to overthrow government, Dr. Mac-Palm contracted Donya Kafui to manufacture explosives and pistols and Dr. Mac-Palm subsequently converted the X-ray laboratory of his Citadel Hospital at Alajo in Accra into a manufacturing shop where Kafui mounted his tools and machines to manufacture the weapons.
Again, the accused are said to have procured weapons and test-fired the locally manufactured weapons at the military shooting range general area at Teshie, Accra.
The accused persons, according to the prosecution, also discussed the procurement of electronic jamming devices and vehicles that would enable them take over the National Communications Authority (NCA) and jam all radio stations with the exception of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), where they intended to broadcast their successful overthrow of the government from.
The facts further indicated that the military and other security agencies on September 20, 2019, stormed the Citadel Hospital and arrested Dr. Mac-Palm and Donya Kafui, and also retrieved some hidden weapons from a generator set and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) from some car tires on the premises of the hospital.
“A thorough search of the premises of the hospital and the houses of the accused persons by security operatives revealed the sketch maps, tools used in the manufacturing of the weapons and the IEDs, locally manufactured pistols, several rounds of ammunitions, three hand smoke grenades, among others,” the facts stressed.
BY Gibril Abdul Razak