The Attorney-General has indicated to the High Court in Tema that it is “vehemently opposed to the motion for bail pending trial” filed by #FixtheCountry Convener, Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor.
This appears in sharp contrast to a gesture of goodwill demonstrated by the Office at the Supreme Court last week when it said it “may not oppose a bail application filed at the appropriate forum.”
An affidavit in opposition to the bail sighted by Citi News, however, indicates why the Attorney-General is now vehemently opposing Mr. Barker-Vormawor’s application.
Deposed to by an Attorney at the Office of the Attorney-General, Anastacia Karimu, with the consent and authority of the Attorney-General, and filed on March 9, 2022, the affidavit gives six (6) reasons for the Attorney-General’s opposition to the application
i. Treason Felony Charge Sustainable
According to the Attorney-General’s affidavit in opposition, evidence gathered so far by the police can sustain the charge of Treason Felony as proffered. It alleges that Mr. Barker-Vormawor’s “conduct revealed a systematic pattern on his part to incite his social media followers into accepting his endeavour to usurp the constitutional organs of Government.” The sworn affidavit says the embattled #Fixthecountry convener has “since 2021 been inciting social media followers to effect by unlawful means an overthrow of the constitutionally established organs of the Government of Ghana”, which advocacy has since been started “through a number of posts on his Facebook and Twitter social media accounts”.
ii. Applicant-Police Non-Cooperation
The Attorney-General contends that Mr. Barker-Vormarwor “has not been cooperating with the Police.” The affidavit claims that he has “blatantly refused to comply” with a 17th February 2022 District Court Order to give the “Police access to his phone by unlocking same to enable them conduct a search on the phone as part of the investigations.” Again, the affidavit claims that a search warrant was issued on 16th February 2022 “for a search to be conducted on the residences of the applicant, but he has failed to show the police any fixed place of abode within Ghana, thereby rendering it impossible for the search warrant to executed.”
iii. Mr. Barker-Vormawor has no fixed place of abode
Police investigations also show that Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor “has no fixed place of abode, Ghana, thus making him a flight risk.” The Attorney-General contends that Mr. Barker-Vormawor “is not likely to appear to stand trial if granted bail.”
iv. Interference with Investigations
The Attorney-General consequently submitted before the Court that investigations were yet to be concluded, and, contends that Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor “by his conduct has shown that he will interfere or hamper investigations if granted bail.”
He thus prayed the High Court not to grant bail to the beleaguered activist.
In the contention of the Attorney-General, the applicant “has not demonstrated that he has people of good character and sufficient means willing to stand as sureties for him.”
vi. Test of Reasonable Delay
In the full estimation of the Attorney-General, there has not been any unreasonable delay in putting the applicant before the Court for trial. He also contends that the trial will begin as soon as investigations are completed.
The Oliver Application
Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor has prayed the Court in his application to grant him bail to enable him to prepare a defence to the accusation levelled against him.
In an affidavit in support of the motion signed on 3rd March 2022 and sighted by Citi News, the #Fixthecountry convener says he has never previously been accused of or charged with, a criminal offence.
He also assured the Court that he had people of good character and means to stand as sureties for him, and would additionally cooperate with the investigations while availing himself for trial.
Failed Bail Application Hearing
The High Court, Tema, could, however, not hear the bail application for the #Fixthecountry convenor, Oliver Barker Vormawor on Thursday, as was scheduled.
His lawyers led by Dr. Justice Srem Sai, prayed the Court for more time to study an affidavit in opposition to the bail application filed by the Attorney General.
He said the application had just been served on them, and they needed time to study and respond to it.
The applicant has subsequently been adjourned to Monday, March 14, 2022, for a hearing.
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