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Barker-Vormawor to know his bail fate today

Source The Ghana Report

The Tema High Court is expected to deliver its ruling on a bail application by #FixTheCountry Movement convener Oliver Barker-Vormawor today (16 March 2022).

The court set the date two days ago after lawyers of the youth activist moved a bail application on behalf of their client.

The accused, charged for treason felony, posted on his social media platform that he will stage a coup himself, should the government pass the controversial electronic levy.

When the case was called, Akoto Ampaw, the lead counsel for the accused, explained that the post by his client was a conditional phrase that he shared as a viewpoint concerning coups in the subregion.

He noted that the post did not constitute a crime by Ghana’s laws.

Senior State Attorney Hilda Craig disagreed.

She insisted that the post showed a statement of intent, which he followed through by coming to Ghana.

Another issue raised in the Attorney General’s affidavit in opposition to the bail application was that the accused did not have a fixed place of abode.

Mr Akoto-Ampaw said the statement was untrue since the accused has led them to three different locations, where further investigations have been conducted.

Again, the Senior State Attorney insisted that the accused had no place of abode.

According to her, the youth activist is a lodger who lives with his friends when he is in the country and, therefore, cannot be trusted to come to court if granted bail.

Mr Barker-Vormawor’s lawyer maintained that his client is not a flight risk as alleged by the prosecution since his passport is with the prosecution.

Commenting on that, the Senior State Attorney argued that there had been instances where many people have used unapproved routes to travel outside the country and hence the accused was still a flight risk.

After listening to the parties, the presiding judge, Daniel Mensah, adjourned the case.

Meanwhile, earlier reports suggested that Oliver was unwell and had been taken to the Police Hospital.

When the judge inquired from the accused about his health status in open court, he said he was in good health and hoped they take him to trial.

Background

The accused was arrested on 11 February 2022 by the Tema Regional Police Command following a post he allegedly made on social media to the effect that he would stage a coup himself if Parliament passed the controversial Electronic Levy (E-Levy) Bill.

“The post contained a clear statement of intent with a possible will to execute a coup in his declaration of intent to subvert the constitution of the Republic of Ghana,” the police statement dated 12 February 2022, signed by the Director-General of Public Affairs, DCOP Kwesi Ofori said.

After his post, a section of Ghanaians who found his comments distasteful poured out on social media to call the Ghana Police Service to arrest him.

He was arraigned on Monday, 14 February 2022, and has been on remand since his first Ashaiman District court appearance.

Mr Barker-Vormawor has been charged with a treason felony, but he pleaded not guilty.

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