Haruna, Zanetor and other 18 NDC MPs fail to show up in court

The Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu, Klortey Korle MP Zanetor Rawlings and 18 other NDC legislators failed to show up in court, although court documents showed they have been summoned. 

There was no show at the Circuit Court although anxious party supporters had thronged the court.

The legislators have been charged over their march to the Electoral Commission on December 22, last year.

When the case was called in Accra Circuit Court 11 on Monday, the police prosecution indicated his readiness to proceed with the case, but neither the suspects nor their lawyers were in court.

The circuit court judge Priscilla Mireku was forced to adjourn the case.

The 18 others include the Deputy Minority Leader, Dr James Klutse Avedzi and Minority Chief Whip,  Mohammed Mubarak Muntaka, Samuel George, John Abdulai Jinapor, Rockson Defiamekpor, Ras Mubarak, Mutawakilu Adam and Ebenezer Okletey Terlabi.

The rest are Dr. Kwabena Donkor, A.B. Fuseini,  Kwabena Minta Akando, Yusif Issaka Jaja, Isaac Adongo, Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, James Klutse Avedzi, James Agalga, Collins Dauda, Abdul Rashi  Pelpuo and Richard Quashigah.

In addition to the MPs, the opposition party’s deputy General Secretary, Peter Boamah Otokunor, has also been slapped with the same offence.

Facts

Per the facts, the legislators failed to notify the police before their march.

The statement of offence said they unlawfully assembled and conducted themselves “in a manner likely to cause persons in the Neighbourhood reasonable fear where a breach of the peace is likely to be occasioned.”

Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Evans Kesse said at about 10:30 am on December 22, the accused persons whose intention was not known, suddenly started marching from the Parliament House to the office of the Electoral Commission.

The prosecution said the legislators led by the Minority leader Haruna Iddrisu told the police that they were marching to present a petition to the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission.

According to ASP Kesse, the police reminded them that their actions was a breach of law and advised to resort to the dictates of the Public Order Act.

But the legislators were adamant.

ASP Kesse said Mr Iddrisu and his colleagues failed to adhere to the advice of the Police and forced their way through the barricade, which had been formed by the police at the premises of the Commission and got to the entrance of the Commission.

“They were however overpowered and dispersed,” he narrated.

Background

The Minority in Parliament on December 22 marched to the Electoral Commission headquarters to protest the results of the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary polls.

The march came on the back of the continuous street protests by supporters of the party following the declaration of results by the chairperson of the Electoral Commission Jean Mensa.

The NDC and its flagbearer John Mahama described the results which gave President Akufo-Addo 51% of the votes as ‘flawed’.

The MPs intended to march to the EC Head office and present a petition to the Chairperson of the Commission over the results of the December elections.

But met the absence of the commissioner.

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