By: Helena Selby
According to Appiah-Kubi, the non-appearance of the prosecution in court on the last adjourned date was not recorded in the records book of the court.
He therefore, reminded the court that it was an unethical practice for the prosecution’s absence from court not to be entered in the in the court books. The counsel told the court that his client had not given any indication of absenting herself from trial.
However, Mr. Abariga argued that there could not have been any prejudice in the case on their part, if the court had not recorded their explanation for being absent in court, since the case had not even commenced.
The court therefore, adjourned sitting to November 22, 2010.
The accused person, who is a 24-year-old hairdresser, is standing trial on two counts – causing panic and fear, as well as deceit of public officer. She has pleaded not guilty to both charges.
State Attorney, Mr. Paul Abariga, had earlier told the court that on Oct 26, 2010, on Adom FM, a private radio station in Tema in the Greater Accra Region, Amina Mohammed was on the airwaves, where she said she was travelling with her mother and three children on a Yutong bus with registration number GN 263-10 to the North.
The prosecution alleged that the accused person, who resides in Tema in the Greater Accra Region, said on the airwaves that the bus was attacked by armed robbers on the highway, during which the robbers forced the men on the bus at gunpoint to rape the female passengers.
She further alleged that a father was forced to rape his 14-year-old daughter, adding that passengers were robbed of their belongings.
The prosecution also told the court that following the narration on the airwaves, several radio stations picked up the issue, which led to causing extensive fear and panic among the people.
The prosecution said on Oct 12, 2010, the driver of the Yutong bus lodged a complaint at the Ejisu police station that his bus containing 47 passengers was attacked by armed robbers at Kubease in the Ejisu Municipality, but denied that any mass rape of the passengers took place.
The prosecution noted that it was the statement of the driver that en route to Bolgatanga, he encountered a scenario where armed robbers had blocked the road with logs, but managed to drive through, and escaped the armed attack on the bus, which resulted in damage to the windscreen of the vehicle.
The driver was said to have gone to the Ejisu Police Station to report the incident.
He spent 30 minutes at the station and left for his destination.