By Agnes Ansah ,
Unlike the first invitation where the unflinching support from his sympathisers resulted in a crowd gathering at the entrance of the Police Headquarters, this time round, the place was very calm and solemn, with business as usual.
This was, however, not because Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo didn’t get the backing of his party sympathisers, but they had earlier been hinted that the National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) wasn’t going to show up, as was being championed on radio by Sammy Gyamfi, Communications Director of the party.
The Chairman truly didn’t show up at the Police Headquarters, rather, his four ardent lawyers, namely Marietta Brew Appiah-Oppong, Abraham Amaliba, Tony Lithur and Edudzi Tamakloe, presented a letter on his behalf.
Some of the issues raised in the letter, which was signed by Dr Dominic Akuritinga Ayine and addressed to Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo-Danquah, Director-General, Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Ghana Police Service, indicated that the invitation was a ploy to damage Mr Ampofo’s defense at the ongoing trial involving he and another person at the High Court.
It would be recalled that Mr Ampofo and Anthony Kwaku Boahen are currently the subject of criminal proceedings in court, in Criminal Case Number CR0385/2019, entitled The Republic v. Samuel Ofosu Ampofo & Anthony Kwaku Boahen.
The charges against them arose out of investigations conducted by the CID over voice recordings in the aftermath of the violence-ridden Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election.
The letter indicated that the CID couldn’t substantiate the claim of kidnapping in the previous investigation, hence, the current invitation was a prejudice to Mr Ofosu- Ampofo’s defense in the ongoing case at the High Court.
The letter also stated that the invitation constitutes political harassment and intimidation, and violates Mr Ampofo’s fundamental human rights and constitutional right.
“Finally, our client has instructed us to make it abundantly clear to you, which we hereby do, that he is a politician, and as the National Chairman of National Democratic Congress, the largest opposition party in the country, he and his party leadership and members cannot help, but notice the failing security situation in the country, since the present government took office.
“Your invitation, its tone and insinuations is simply an attempt to “pass the buck” and shift the blame over the increasing inability of the security agencies, including your outfit, to manage and control the failures of security and the governance structures of the country as a whole,” the letter said.
Read the full letter below
We act as lawyers for Mr. Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, the National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (N DC) and have his instructions to respond to your letter dated May 7, 2019 and referenced CID/AR.125/2019/34.
It is common knowledge that our client and one other person are currently the subject of criminal proceedings in court in Criminal Case Number CR0385/2019 intituled The Republic v. Samuel Ofosu Ampfofo & Anthony Kwaku Boahen.
The charges against them arose out of investigations your office claims to have undertaken into certain voice recordings after the violence-ridden Ayawaso West Wuogon bye-elections.
You would recall that when your office claimed to have “intercepted” a tape, our client, upon honouring your invitation, was arrested and interrogated for several hours by your investigators, on suspicion of having committed the offence of kidnapping, among others.
Realising that the statements contained in the unconstitutionally obtained tape could not sustain the charge of kidnapping against our client, your office immediately dropped that charge.
Having carefully reviewed your letter against the background of the on-going prosecution of our client, we are unable to resist the conclusion that your invitation and so-called investigations into kidnapping, arson and other crimes is collateral to the on-going criminal trial, and that its purpose is partly to prejudice our client’s defence.
Further, our client views the letter of invitation as reflective of an undeniable pattern of political harassment and intimidation which violates his fundamental human rights, particularly his constitutional rights to personal dignity and political association that is devoid of intimidation and harassment.
On our part, while we appreciate that every citizen has a constitutional duty to assist law enforcement agencies in the discharge of their mandate, our considered view is that the current invitation constitutes a gross abuse of the investigative and prosecutorial powers of the police as a public institution.
We take the respectful view that since our client is not under arrest for the alleged offences, he is legally entitled to decline your invitation. We have, therefore, advised him accordingly.
Finally, our client has instructed us to make it abundantly clear to you, which we hereby do, that he is a politician, and as the National Chairman of National Democratic Congress, the largest opposition party in the country, he and his party leadership and members cannot help but notice the failing security situation in the country since the present government took office.
Your invitation, its tone and insinuations, is simply an attempt to “pass the buck” and shift the blame over the increasing inability of the security agencies, including your outfit, to manage and control the failures of security and the governance structures of the country as a whole.
Looking for scapegoats would not improve the situation. Accept, Madam Director-General, the assurances of our highest consideration.