Another fortnight remand for Ashaiman soldier ‘killers’

The Ashaiman Circuit Court presided over by His Honour Simon Gaga on Monday, denied bail for the six suspects standing trial over the alleged murder of Trooper Imoro Sheriff at Taifa, a suburb of Ashaiman, near Tema.

That was their second court appearance after the last adjournment a fortnight ago. The six suspects are Samuel Tetteh, a 20-year-old unemployed resident of Ashaiman, Abubakar Saddick, a 20-year-old scrap dealer and also a resident of Ashaiman and Ibrahim Abdul Rakib.

The rest are Safianu Musah, Yussif Mohammed and Abdul Gafaru Adbul Karim.

Samuel Tetteh and Abubakar Sadick are standing trial on conspiracy to commit crime – namely robbery, contrary to sections 23(1) and 149 of the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 [Act 29]; robbery, contrary to section 149 of the criminal offences Act, 1960 [Act 29].

Ibrahim Abdul Rakib, also a scrap dealer, is standing trial for dishonestly receiving, contrary to section 146 of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (ACT 29).

Lastly, Safianu Musah, a trader, is also standing trial for dishonestly receiving contrary to section 146 of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (ACT 29).

All the accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In the court on Monday, Abdul Fataw Alhassan, counsel for suspects Ibrahim Abdul Rakib, Safianu Musah and Abdul Gafaru Abdul Karim prayed for bail application for his clients, quoting Article 14 (4) of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana, “that trial of an arrested person be done in a reasonable time,” hence, explaining that “keeping the accused in custody must not serve as a punishment to the suspect who has not been convicted.”

He provided the court with two sureties each for his clients as an assurance to the court as one major underpinning bail condition that suspects would avail themselves for trial.

Counsel for Yussif Mohammed, Shahadu Mohammed, also in his bail application for bail, argued that every citizen has their fundamental human right and freedom and the court is duty bound to uphold such rights.

The counsel based his argument on section 96 (1) of the Criminal Proceeding Act 30, adding that albeit granting bail is regulated by procedures of law, it is the discretion of the judge and that must not be arbitrary and capricious.

However, Chief Superintendent Sylvester Asare, the prosecutor, citing precedent of cases at the Supreme Court and other lower courts, countered that the condition for bail is not only to assure the court that suspects would always be produced in court for trial, but also in order not to interfere with investigations.

His prayer was premised on the fact that investigations were still ongoing; consequently he said admitting the suspects to bail would further injure investigation, especially given the nature of accusation and severity of the suspected offence.

The court, after listening to all parties, was of the view that since persecution had not finished with investigations, admitting the four suspects to bail would impede further investigation.

Given that the court denied the suspects bail and asked the police to speed the process and be done with their investigations by the next adjourned date of April 11, 2023.


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