The High Court has been compelled to adjourn the Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu’s case against the Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga and six others in the case of the purchase of ambulances.
The Special Prosecutor brought two different cases against the Bawku Central legislator; one involving the lawmaker’s use of a parliamentary loan approved for the purchase of a V8 vehicle for official use, and the other over an ambulance he purchased for the Bawku Municipal Assembly.
In court, on Monday, June 22, 2020, the Special Prosecutor’s witness could not be found to lead evidence in chief.
The lawyer from the Special Prosecutor’s office, Michael Barfi explained to the Court that arrangements had been made to transport the witness to Accra and to accommodate him and that he was in constant telephone contact with the witness until Saturday evening when all communication between them severed.
The lawyers said they will resort to subpoena to compel the witness to appear before the court.
In the first case, the legislator is being tried for allegedly using public office for private gain.
The Court presided over by Justice Afia Serwaa Botwe in June last year struck out 3 out of 4 charges that were brought against the lawmaker, including; fraudulent evasion of customs, duties and taxes, dealing in foreign exchange without a license, and transfer of foreign exchange from Ghana through an authorized dealer.
The Special Prosecutor subsequently filed a substituted charge sheet which was adopted by the court.
The Court had reasoned that the charges did not fall within the remit of the mandate of the Special Prosecutor.
In the second case, however, Mr. Ayariga is standing trial together with six (6) others; Hajia Hawa Ninchema, Sumaila Ewuntomah Abudu, Alex Vadze, Alhaji Abdul-Mumuni Jesewunde, Mary Stella Adapesa and Mumuni Yakubu Nambe. They are being tried on allegations of procurement breaches in the purchase of an ambulance by the Mr. Ayariga for the Bawku Municipal Assembly.
On the parliamentary loan case also, the lawyer says his witnesses were not immediately ready to be called so could also not be heard.
The Court thus adjourned the cases to 13th October 2020 for case management. This will be after the legal vacation.