High Court Judge, Justice Marie Louise Simmons has served notice of discharging former Ghana Football Association President Kwasi Nyantakyi if the state fails to open its case.
This was after Assistant State Attorney Derrick Ackah-Nyamike had told the court the state is unable to call its first witness at this stage.
The court on May 17, 2023, laid down conditions under which the state’s key witness Anas Aremyaw was to testify.
The investigative journalist was ordered to avail himself in the chambers of the Judge to allow for inspection of his face by Mr Nyantakyi before mounting the witness box to testify.
Mr. Anas has in a statement indicated this arrangement exposes him to various security threats and will therefore not be availing himself.
The Prosecutor Derrick Ackah-Nyamike informed the court the state’s legal team has since held meetings with the witness.
“We have obtained a copy of the Court’s ruling and we met the witness a few days ago and some concerns were raised and as a result, the Republic is considering its legal and procedural options.
“Shortly before we entered, I explained this to counsel for A1, and the Republic will like to apologise profusely to the court because we assured the court that we will be ready. We humbly pray for a date to put our house in order”
Lawyers for Mr Nyantakyi represented by Baffuor Gyawu Bonsu Ashia had concerns. He pointed out that the trial is currently shrouded in secrecy making preparations very difficult.
He pointed out that the state has even failed to indicate which witness it will be calling to the stand at the next date.
Charles Puozing who represents the other accused person, Abdulai Alhassan urged the court to discharge the two accused persons.
“My difficulty is that my client resides in Tamale. Even if he has to come back, the risk involved is enormous and if he has to come by air, it is so expensive. It is my prayer that the accused persons be discharged.
“Whenever the state is ready, they serve us with a hearing notice. You are the 3rd judge and this matter has been pending for four years. All adjournments in the last four years have been at the instance of the prosecution,” he stated.
Justice Simmons served notice of discharging the accused persons should this trend continue.
“The case has travelled through the hands of two other judges and several adjournments. In view of the fact that the last adjourned date was the decision on the testimony of one of the witnesses, I would grant you one more adjournment to call a witness or have the accused discharged.”
Mr Ackah-Nyamike assured the court the state will put its house in order.
The case is back in court on July 25, 2023.