In a case in which Akoto Ampaw, the lead counsel of President Nana Akufo-Addo in the 2020 Election Petition case is standing as a lead counsel for the embattled convener of FixTheCountry, the Ashaiman District Court, presided over by Eleanor Barnes Botchway, yesterday remanded into custody Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor for allegedly threatening to stage a coup against the Akufo-Addo government.
Mr. Barker-Vormawor has been charged with treason felony, contrary to Section 182 (b) of the Criminal and other Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29).
The charge sheet filed at the Ashaiman District Court indicates that the accused person, Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor, sometime in February 2022, prepared to embark on any unlawful means and enterprise aimed at usurping the executive powers of the Government of Ghana.
After his charge was read to him in open court, DSP Sylvester Asare read the brief facts, after which the lead counsel for the accused, Akoto Ampaw, applied for bail for his client. The state, however, opposed it.
In turning the request down, the Magistrate, Eleanor Barnes Botchway, indicated that she does not have jurisdiction to grant bail in a case involving the charge of treason felony.
She consequently remanded the accused person into Police custody, and by the two weeks’ timeline required by law to have accused persons on remand to make appearance in court.
Sitting was therefore adjourned to February 28, 2022.
The brief facts, as presented in court by DSP Sylvester Asare were that “the Accused person is a lawyer and convener of social movement, namely “FixTheCountry”. Sometime in February, 2022, the Ashaiman Police received a report that the accused person was inciting some group of persons believed to be members of the FixTheCountry movement.
According to him, on receipt of the report, the Police mounted surveillance on the accused person until his arrest at Kotoka International Airport on Friday February 11, 2022 when he arrived from the United Kingdom.
Preliminary investigation had revealed that accused is a lawyer and a PhD student at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.
The facts further indicate that “it has also been established during investigation that accused for some time now has been inciting some group of persons through the social media to undertake an unlawful enterprise to usurp the executive powers of the Government of Ghana”.
He continued that, pursuant to the accused person’s preparation to usurp the executive powers of the Government of Ghana, he further published on his Facebook wall that the Ghana army is useless, and went ahead to declare his intention to stage a coup if the Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy) was passed by Parliament.
Investigations, according to the Police, “also revealed that the said E-Levy Bill is currently before Parliament and that the accused arrival in the country was in furtherance of his intention to stage a coup as declared by him”.