The Kaneshie District Court on Wednesday made a U-turn and rescinded its bench warrant issued for the arrest of Member of Parliament for Madina, Hon Francis Xavier Sosu.
The Court reached the decision to rescind the warrant in less than 24 hours after the lawmaker had filed a motion on notice for Stay of Execution and for an order to set aside the bench warrant issued by District Court presided by Mr Oheneba Kufour.
The legislator who has been a subject matter of an alleged criminal summons is being sought to answer to three charges to wit; causing unlawful damage, obstruction of traffic and causing danger to roads users.
Hon Francis Sosu was in court with his led counsel, Mr. Victor Adawudu .
Some Senior Members of Parliament led by Minority Leader, Hon Haruna Iddrissu was in the court to witness the proceeding.
Other members of the Minority Caucus of Parliament who were at the court to give their moral support to the Madina lawmaker were a former Deputy Attorney General, Hon. Dominic Ayine and former Minister for Youth and Sports, Hon Nii Lantey Vanderpuye.
The rests were a former Deputy Interior Minister and Ranking Member for Defence and Interior Committee, Hon James Agalga, former Tourism Minister, Hon. Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare. Bawku Central MP and former Environment Science and Technology Minister Mahama Ayariga and Hon. Gizella Tetteh-Agbotu, MP for Awutu-Senya West.
The case has since been adjourned till January 12, 2022.
Hon Sosu in his affidavit in support of the motion on notice for an order to rescind bench warrant, said, his inability to appear before the court was not out of disregard for the court, but due to the fact that, his presence was necessary for the public hearing of Anti-Gay bill.
According to him, he is the Deputy Ranking Member for the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs of Parliament of Ghana and that, the committee had a public hearing in respect of the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill, hence his inability to appear in court.
Read below full details
I wish for the purpose of loved ones and well-wishers to set the records straight in respect of the determination of the Ghana Police Service to unlawfully arrest, detain, and prosecute me for the only reason that I was doing my constitutional duty as a Member of Parliament.
1. The whole resort to Criminal summons is yet an extended attempt by the Ghana Police Service to get me arrested and stand a prosecution which is in utmost bad faith, malicious and currently the subject matter of an action before the High Court in Suit No. HR/0010/2022 Francis-Xavier Sosu vrs. IGP which is for the Enforcement of my Fundamental Human Rights under Article 33 of the 1992 Constitution and Order 67 of C.I 47, which motion was filed on Tuesday, November 16, 2021.
2. That you will recall that the Police resorted to issuance of Criminal summons on the 4th Day of November 2021, after their two failed attempts at arresting me after our lawful demonstration on Monday, October 25 2021, and during my Church visit on Sunday, October 31 2021.
3. That the Criminal summons contrary to law and due process was issued when I was out of the country on Parliamentary duties and the fact my travel outside the jurisdiction was duly conveyed to the Court.
4. That I was unable to be in court on previous occasions because I was out of the jurisdiction and upon my return, there has not been any official communication from Parliament of any such service of Criminal summons on me.
5. That it is out of deference to the Court that I instructed Lawyer Kojogah Adawudu to follow up the matter and file the appropriate processes to Stay Proceedings and to have the Criminal Summons set aside on grounds of illegality, lack of procedural fairness, and unreasonableness contrary to the 1992 Constitution.
6. The said application which is for Stay of Proceedings and for an Order to Set-Aside the Criminal summons was filed at 8:47am on Monday, November 29 2021, and had been scheduled to be heard on Thursday, December 9, 2021, before His Worship Oheneba Kuffour at the Kaneshie District Magistrate Court which issued the said Criminal Summons.
7. When the matter came up for mentioning on 29th November 2021, my Lawyer who was present in Court drew the Court’s attention to both the Human Rights action pending at the High Court and the Application for Stay of Proceedings and for an order to set aside the criminal summons that was issued by the Court.
8. That in addition to the above fact, my lawyer informed the court that I was on the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee which was considering memoranda from the public in respect of the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill, 2021 and the said hearing was broadcasted live on Ghana Television (GTV) and other media houses. As such, my non-attendance was not out of malice or disrespect to the court.
9. I was therefore very shocked and scandalized by the court’s order for my arrest on a day and at a time when I was on a Committee of the Parliament of Ghana and performing my legislative function, and when there is still no official communication of the said summons to me, and also considering the Human Rights action at the High Court and the motion to set aside the said criminal summons.
10. I have since instructed my lawyers and two actions have been filed today, Tuesday, November 30 2021. The application at the High Court for Stay of Execution and for an order setting aside the said Bench Warrant issued on November 29, 2021, is fixed for hearing on Wednesday, December 8 2021. The second action is an application before the Kaneshie District Court for an order to rescind the warrant unlawfully and unreasonably issued for my arrest, pursuant to Section 73 of the Criminal and Other Offences Act 1960 (Act 30). This application would be heard on Thursday, December 9, 2021.
11. Both actions have been duly served on the Attorney General and the Ghana Police Service and the Prosecutors in the case.
12. I am hopeful that the Ghana Police Service, and the Attorney General, having been properly served with these processes, will respect the dictates of RULE OF LAW and abide by the laws of the Republic of Ghana until we meet in court for consideration of the respective motions filed against the warrant, criminal summons and the motion intended to enforce my fundamental human rights.
13. I maintain that I have not committed any crime and will not subject myself to any unlawful arrest, detention and malicious prosecution, which is why I have resorted to the law courts for the protections against what I see clearly as state-sponsored needless interference with my work as a Public Interest and Human Rights Lawyer and advocate and a Member of Parliament of the Republic of Ghana. I consider the conduct of the Police which is blessed by the Kaneshie Court as a serious breach of Article 122 and would at the appropriate time
invoke those laws. 14. As I issue this Press Release, the state has taken away my official bodyguard under the guise of interdiction which I consider highly unfortunate.
15. It is obvious that the Ghana Police Service is above the law and can be allowed by some of our courts to violate rights of individuals including the rights of members of Parliament without being called to account for their actions.
16. I consider the Police action and the recent Bench warrant as a deliberate attack on my person, personal and family security. This is coupled with strange men following me and seen around my residence and office areas which highly endangers my life, that of my family and workers.
17. I wish to remind the President of the Republic of Ghana and the Ghana Police Service that as a Statesman serving my nation in my capacity as a Member of Parliament, my personal security and security of my family should have been their concern. Obviously, the treatment by the Police administration and the current Bench Warrant in the face of the above facts shows that there is an attempt to obstruct my duties in clear violation of the 1992 Constitution.
18. I wish to inform all my loved ones that I am good; I remain focused and resolute in my desire to serve to the peril of my life: I urge you all to remain calm and prayerful, for our God is greater than any evil scheme of persons in power and positions of trust.
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