We don’t want military escort – Soldiers in coup plot case
Soldiers standing trial in an alleged coup plot have raised concerns over continuous military escort despite being granted bail.
Together with five others, the soldiers have been accused of being part of a plot to destabilise the country and possibly overthrow the current Akufo-Addo led administration.
On Tuesday, April 13, the soldiers told the Accra High Court to stop the military from escorting them to court through their lawyers.
Lawyer for Col Samuel Kojo Gameli, Eric Pongo, told the court that “his client was being followed around in court by military persons despite being granted bail”.
Shortly after his submission, the counsel for Warrant Officer II Esther Saan reiterated the same concern.
The lawyers insisted that such practice was intimidating.
In response to their complaint, a squadron leader, a lawyer of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF), Sandra Efusah-Nana Agyemang, acting as a friend to the court, said it was part of their protocols.
She said it was a common practice to give officers standing trial moral support.
But the lawyers said they do not need such moral support.
The High Court judge, Justice Samuel Asiedu, who sided with GAF, said nothing was wrong with a military escort.
He said he would have acted on the complaint if the accused persons’ rights were being violated.
The soldiers in the case are Colonel Samuel Kojo Gameli, WO2 Esther Saan, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Corporal Seidu Abubakar, Sylvester Akanbiri.
They have all been charged with treason.
Also, a medical doctor, Dr Frederick Yao Mac Palm, has been accused of being the plot’s mastermind.
The other accused persons are Donya Kafui, Bright Alan Debrah Ofosu and Johannes Zikpi.
The accused persons have been slapped with six separate charges, including treason felony, contrary to section 23 (1) and 182 (b) of the criminal and other offences Act, 1960.
Dr Mac-Palm, Dornyor Kafui, Allan Debrah Ofosu, Dekuwine, Abubakar, L/Cpl Akanpewon and Zikpi are on charges of conspiracy to commit treason felony and treason felony.
Dr Mac-Palm and Kafui have been separately charged with conspiracy to possess explosives and ammunition without lawful excuse and possession of explosives and ammunition.
Col Gameli and ACP Dr Agordzo have been charged with abetment to treason felony. Charges, they have all pleaded not guilty to.
The trial’s commencement has been deferred to May 4 because three of the 10 accused persons who could not meet their bail were not brought to court due to Covid-19 issues.