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AYARIGA FIGHTS AMIDU

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…Challenges His Capacity To Prosecute Him

Embattled Member of Parliament (MP) for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga, is challenging the qualification or otherwise of the Special Prosecutor, Mr. Martin Amidu, to bring charges against him based on the fact that he is not a legitimate holder of the Office of Special Prosecutor of the Republic of Ghana.

Lawyer for the MP, Dominic Ayine, has filed a motion at the Financial and Economic Crime High Court presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, challenging the qualification of the Special Prosecutor to prefer charges against his client. Ironically, a pending application at the Apex Court of the land which has raised similar issues was also filed by Dominic Ayine.

According to the affidavits in support of the motion filed by lawyers of the MP, Mr Ayariga states that he has been advised by Counsel and verily believes same to be true that the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, who is above 65 years is not qualified to hold the Office of Special Public Prosecutor since the holding of that office is in contravention of Article 199(1) and (4) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.  

The Affidavit states, “I have been advised by Counsel and verily believe same to be true that due to the disqualification of the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, under Article 199 (1) and (4) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, he has no capacity in law to append his signature on the charge sheet, the process originating the criminal charges against the Applicant [ Mahama Ayariga] MP.”

The affidavits further argued that, “Count one (1), three (3), four (4) and five (5) are offences that are not within the remit or powers of the Special Prosecutor and same cannot be prosecuted by the Office.”

Mahama Ayariga (MP) and Kendrick Akwasi Marfo, have been charged with five counts  of one (1) Fraudulent Evasion of Customs Duties and Taxes Contrary to Section 121 (2) (f)  of the Customs Act,  2015 (Act 891); two (2) Using Public Office for Private Benefit Contrary to Section 179C (a)  of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29); three (3) Fraudulent Evasion of Customs Duties and Taxes Contrary to Section 121 (2) (f) of the Customs Act, 2015 (Act 891); four (4) Dealing in Foreign  Exchange Without License Contrary to Section 3 (1) and 29 (1) (a) of the Foreign Exchange Act, 2006 (Act 723) and five (5) Transfer of Foreign Exchange  from Ghana through an Unauthorized Dealer Contrary to Section 15(3) and 29(1) (a)  of the Foreign Exchange Act,  2006 (Act 723).

 In court today, Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, ordered the parties to file their legal arguments instead of arguing orally in court in order to save some time. To that end, she gave all parties 72 hours to file same. She subsequently ruled that she will deliver a ruling on the issues raised at the next court sitting which she fixed for Monday the 17th of June, 2019.*Special Prosecutor Not Qualified to Charge Me – Mahama Ayariga*

Embattled Member of Parliament (MP) for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga, is challenging the qualification or otherwise of the Special Prosecutor, Mr. Martin Amidu, to bring charges against him based on the fact that he is not a legitimate holder of the Office of Special Prosecutor of the Republic of Ghana.

Lawyer for the MP, Dominic Ayine, has filed a motion at the Financial and Economic Crime High Court presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, challenging the qualification of the Special Prosecutor to prefer charges against his client. Ironically, a pending application at the Apex Court of the land which has raised similar issues was also filed by Dominic Ayine.

According to the affidavits in support of the motion filed by lawyers of the MP, Mr Ayariga states that he has been advised by Counsel and verily believes same to be true that the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, who is above 65 years is not qualified to hold the Office of Special Public Prosecutor since the holding of that office is in contravention of Article 199(1) and (4) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.  

The Affidavit states, “I have been advised by Counsel and verily believe same to be true that due to the disqualification of the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, under Article 199 (1) and (4) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, he has no capacity in law to append his signature on the charge sheet, the process originating the criminal charges against the Applicant [ Mahama Ayariga] MP.”

The affidavits further argued that, “Count one (1), three (3), four (4) and five (5) are offences that are not within the remit or powers of the Special Prosecutor and same cannot be prosecuted by the Office.”

Mahama Ayariga (MP) and Kendrick Akwasi Marfo, have been charged with five counts  of one (1) Fraudulent Evasion of Customs Duties and Taxes Contrary to Section 121 (2) (f)  of the Customs Act,  2015 (Act 891); two (2) Using Public Office for Private Benefit Contrary to Section 179C (a)  of the Criminal Offences Act 1960 (Act 29); three (3) Fraudulent Evasion of Customs Duties and Taxes Contrary to Section 121 (2) (f) of the Customs Act, 2015 (Act 891); four (4) Dealing in Foreign  Exchange Without License Contrary to Section 3 (1) and 29 (1) (a) of the Foreign Exchange Act, 2006 (Act 723) and five (5) Transfer of Foreign Exchange  from Ghana through an Unauthorized Dealer Contrary to Section 15(3) and 29(1) (a)  of the Foreign Exchange Act,  2006 (Act 723).

 In court today, Justice Afia Serwaa Asare Botwe, ordered the parties to file their legal arguments instead of arguing orally in court in order to save some time. To that end, she gave all parties 72 hours to file same. She subsequently ruled that she will deliver a ruling on the issues raised at the next court sitting which she fixed for Monday the 17th of June, 2019.

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