Court discharges 18 accused and grants bail to others bail in Sherigu-Fulani disturbances

A Bolgatanga Circuit Court has discharged 18 out of the 61 persons standing trial in the matter involving the Sherigu community and the State in connection with the rioting between the youth of Sherigu and some Fulani settlers in the area. 

The rest, 43 in number, have also been granted bail with two sureties each and are to reappear on July 3, 2023. 

The suspects had been charged with conspiracy to commit crime namely; causing unlawful damage and rioting with weapons. 

The suspects were arrested by the Police at Sherigu, a community in the Bolgatanga Municipality for allegedly attacking Fulani settlers and violently protesting against the Police. 

The Fulanis were alleged by the residents of Sherigu to have constantly attacked and robbed residents of their properties and killed a resident in the area. 

However, the court, presided over by Mr Sumaila Mbache Ahmadu, discharged 18 persons after the Police could not establish their involvement in the incidents and granted bail to the rest. 

Earlier, the prosecution led by Chief Superintendent Rueben Dugah said, the suspects were youth and residents of Sherigu who about two weeks ago, attacked Fulani settlements, burnt their dwellings, killed some of their animals and displaced 170 of them.  

Prosecution said on June 4, 2023, at about 1000 hours, the Upper East Regional Police Command received information that the youth of Sherigu had planned to attack the Fulani settlements for the second time and allegedly kill the Sherigu Chief and his sons for being behind the presence of the Fulanis in their community. 

Mr Dugah said based on the information, the Police located the ringleader’s house and arrested six suspects. 

Prosecution said, however, before the Police could proceed to make further arrests, the youth had mobilised, blocked the roads at two different sections and launched an attack on the Police by pelting stones at them and succeeded in causing damage to a vehicle belonging to the Police which was being used by the Defense Officer of the Intelligence Unit of the Military who was part of the team. 

The prosecution said the Police maneuvered and conveyed the six suspects to the Regional Police headquarters in Bolgatanga while a reinforcement team was mobilised to proceed back to Sherigu to restore calm. 

However, prosecution said before the team could proceed, the Sherigu youth had gone to the Bolgatanga Police Station and attacked the Police with stones, causing extensive damage to the glass windows and doors to both the Bolgatanga Station and the Regional MTTD Office but the Police managed to disperse the youth. 

Mr Dugah said information was later gathered that the youth had mobilised again to attack the Sherigu Chief and had blocked roads to prevent access to security personnel, so following this third attack, the police proceeded to arrest the 61 suspects for their involvement in various attacks. 

He said the Police have not yet commenced investigations into it and prayed for the court to remand all accused into prison custody. 

But Counsel for the accused pleaded that there were minors among the suspects and prayed the court to grant them bail. 

Source: GNA 

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