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Ayariga – Special Prosecutor not qualified to charge me

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The Member of Parliament (MP) for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga, is challenging the qualification of the Special Prosecutor, Mr. Martin Amidu, to bring charges against him.

According to Ayariga, Martin Amidu 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 believe 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”.

It goes on to say that “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”

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.