An Accra High Court has rescinded its decision to grant bail to a murder suspect, Gregory Afoko, who had been unlawfully held in police custody for 120 days.
The decision was taken by a different judge at the Accra High Court, Justice Merley Wood, who has overturned the decision made by another High Court judge, Justice George Buadi.
It was Justice Buadi who granted Gregory Afoko bail on March 14 2019. The suspect is being tried for the murder NPP Upper East regional party chairman, Adams Mahama, in 2015.
But the order to release the suspect on bail was disregarded by the state for four months. Within that period, two attempts to have the decision reversed, at the High court and later the Appeal’s court, both failed.
The Akufo-Addo government has been criticised by sections of the public for the continuous detention of Gregory Afoko. The detention called into question the state’s respect for the human rights of citizens.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP), and Director-General of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) faced charges of contempt of court for disobeying lawful orders of the court.
But in a dramatic turn of events, the state filed an application at a High Court presided over by Justice Merley Wood.
JoyNews court reporter Joseph Ackah-Blay said the Chief State Attorney Marina Appiah Opare told the court, Mr. Afoko will not show up for trial if the court does not rescind the bail granted him over three months ago by a different high court judge.
The application was opposed by lawyers for Mr. Afoko led by Sowah Charway who described the application by the state as amounting to ambush litigation aimed at frustrating a man who is “helpless and powerless”.
He reminded the court that another High Court judge had assessed the facts of the matter and ruled that Mr. Afoko should be granted bail.
He said despite the ruling, the state has not allowed Gregory Afoko to even enjoy a second of freedom. He informed the court that there are a number of pending cases relating to this bail issue.
The first, he stated relates to a contempt ruling against the IGP and CID boss slated for July 22 and an appeal filed by the state at the Court of Appeal seeking to set aside the bail.
He said if for nothing at all, the state should take the case to the same judge who had granted the bail to rescind it.
Justice Merley Wood in her ruling said based on the facts presented to her, the bail is rescinded. She adjourned the case to Wednesday, July 17 for the trial to commence.
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