Court grants bail to three South African ex-police officers

Law2An Accra circuit court has granted bail in the sum of GH¢20,000.00 to the three South African ex-police officers who were arrested on Sunday by the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI).

Major Ahmed Shaik Hazis (Rtd), 54; Warrant Officer Denver Dwayhe, 33, and Captain Mlungiseli Jokani, 45, were arrested for training private security personnel for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Presidential Candidate, Nana Akufo-Addo and his running mate Dr Mahamadu Bawumia.

They were charged with conspiracy to commit crime, unlawful training and making false declaration, but the trio pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The court granted them bail in the sum of GH¢20,000 with one surety each. Each surety must provide a valid photo ID card, and the passports of the accused persons must be deposited at the court registry.

Mrs Patricia Quansah, Presiding Judge, granting the bail on Thursday, said the court had taken into consideration the circumstances and the facts before it and also believed that the accused persons being on bail would not affect the investigations of the police.

Earlier, Lead Counsel for the accused persons, Mr Ellis Owusu Fordjour, prayed the court to grant the accused persons bail, saying the three had already given their charge and investigation caution statements willingly to the police signifying that they would be ready to come to court at any time.

He said the facts did not support the charge of engaging in military training, as military training was a special exercise only conducted by the military.

He said the three came into the country on the ticket of the NPP and invited by the Chief Security Officer of the flag bearer to train his own body guards and that of Mr Bawumia and their spouses.

Mr Owusu Fodjour said the accused persons never carried any weapon although they belonged to an international body which provided VIP training to people.

The prosecution, lead by Chief Superintendent Francis Baah, however, opposed the bail application, saying investigations were ongoing and the three were needed by the BNI during the process.

He said the nature of the case called for them to be in police custody, adding that they were foreigners and lived in a hotel.

He said: “We need to be granted some time to find out to what extent the training would have gone.”

Chief Superintendent Baah prayed the court to be given 14 days to be able to conduct ample investigations into the case.

The court, however, granted the accused persons bail and adjourned the case to April 12.

The facts of the case, as presented by Deputy Superintendent of Police Abraham Annor, are that the accused persons are retired South African police officers. Between January and March 2016 the accused persons applied for visa at the Ghana High Commission in South Africa on the pretext of doing business in Ghana.

He said based on the information given to the High Commissioner the accused persons were granted the visa and they arrived in Ghana in March.

The prosecution said few days after, information reached the security agencies that some people were training five people in military tactics at Agona Duakwa.

He told the court that the three were arrested and during investigation they stated that they were brought into the country by one Captain Edmund Kojo Koda (Rtd) and Capt. Kwesi Acquah (Rtd) to train NPP security personnel towards the 2016 elections.

DSP Annor said further investigations at the Ghana Immigration Service revealed that the accused persons filled disembarkation forms indicating that they were in Ghana to do business.

Source: GNA

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