Assembly member innocent in Major Mahama killing — Lawyer

BY: Emmanuel Ebo Hawkson
The late Major Mahama
The late Major Mahama

Counsel for the 22 people alleged to have killed Major Maxwell Adam Mahama claims that the Assembly Member for Denkyira Obuasi, William Baah, who is alleged to be the mastermind of the killing, is innocent.

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According to Mr George Bernard Shaw, Baah did not take part in the alleged lynching of the military officer.

“The assembly member did not conspire with the other accused persons to cause Major Mahama’s death. The facts of the case, as presented by the prosecution, do not reflect what exactly happened,’’ he said.

He, therefore, rejected the charge of conspiracy to commit murder levelled against the accused, describing it as “improper charge’’.


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Counsel made the claim during the hearing of the case at the Accra Central District Court yesterday.

Merits of the case

Mr Shaw was, however, stopped by the presiding magistrate, Mr Joshua Caleb Abaidoo, from advancing his line of argument on the basis that the court was still awaiting the Attorney-General’s (A-G’s) advice on the case.

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Based on that, Mr Abaidoo told counsel that the accused had not been officially charged, adding: “I don’t really see where this is coming from.’’

Mr Abaidoo’s intervention followed an objection raised by the prosecutor, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mr George Amegah, who pleaded with the court to stop counsel from going into the merits of the case.

“We have come before this court for committal and, therefore, counsel should not go into the merits until the trial because if we allege, we must prove,’’ he said.

Amended charged sheet

At yesterday’s hearing, the prosecution, with the permission of the court, amended the charge sheet to accommodate the two new accused persons, Bismarck Abanga and Emmanuel Baidoo, who were arrested recently.

All the accused persons, including Baah and a female, Vivian Asahen, have been provisionally charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder.

Hearing continues on October 10, 2017.

Facts

The facts, as presented by DSP Amegah, were that Major Mahama was the Commander of a military detachment stationed at Diaso in the Upper Denkyira West District in the Central Region to check illegal mining activities.

At 8 a.m. on May 29, 2017, Major Mahama, wearing civilian clothes but with his sidearm, left his detachment base for a 20-kilometre jogging.

The prosecutor said at 9:25 a.m., the military officer got to the outskirts of Denkyira Obuasi, where a number of women were selling foodstuffs by the roadside.

He stopped to interact with the women and even bought some snails, which he left in their custody to be taken on his return from jogging.

While he was taking out money from his pocket to pay for the snails, the woman from whom he had bought the snails and a few others saw Major Mahama’s sidearm tucked to his waist.

Soon after he left, one of the women telephoned the assembly member for Denkyira Obuasi to report what they had seen.

“Without verifying the information, the assembly member mobilised the accused persons and others, some now at large, to attack the military officer,’’ the prosecutor said.

He said the mob met Major Mahama near the Denkyira Obuasi cemetery and, without giving him the opportunity to explain and identify himself, “attacked him with implements such as clubs, cement blocks and machetes, killed him and burnt a portion of his body”.

 

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