Coup plot: “You cannot attribute the weapons to accused without fingerprints,” – lawyer

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Defence Counsel for five accused coup plotters says the weapons allegedly seized from some his clients cannot be attributed to them without their fingerprints.

The five are: Donya Kafui, Bright Alan Debrah, Corporal Seidu Abubakar, Lance Airforce Corporal (LAC) Ali Solomon and Corporal Sylvester Akanpewon.

“I suggest to you that without the fingerprints taken on the guns, steel pipes and other exhibits allegedly collected from the Citadel Hospital, you cannot confidently say that these exhibits belong to Dr Frederick Mac Palm (A1) and Donya Kafui (A2).

This was during a cross-examination of Detective Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah, an investigator with the National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) and the 13th Prosecution’s witness.

“Taking fingerprints on exhibits is not just formality. It is when you want to narrow down the exhibit to one person or two people that is where it is necessary to take fingerprints on the exhibits, here, they are attributed to all the accused persons therefore narrowing it to one person is not appropriate.” Mr Nkrumah said.

Defence Counsel asked, “In the course of investigation, did you take the fingerprints of the accused persons in relation to the guns or exhibits?”.

Witness answered in the negative and said he did not take fingerprints of any of the accused persons.

“I am suggesting to you that you cannot conclusively determine the ownership of the guns, steel pipes or Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and the other exhibits that were collected”.

Mr Nkrumah said, “All the accused persons were going to use them on the day they had planned the overthrow, but the exhibits and blacksmith tools solely belonged to Kafui (A2) who brought them from Alavanyo to make the weapons.”

“In the course of your investigation did it come to your attention that the tools were collected as part of the exhibits outside the x-ray container?” the lawyer enquired. but the witness said he did not know where the officers picked them from.

Defence Counsel also asked whether Mr Nkrumah as part of the investigative team reconstructed how a blacksmith workshop looked like but the witness answered no, adding that Kafui (A2) with the company of the crime scene management visited the Citadel Hospital for him to demonstrate where he set up and made the weapons.

“This reconstruction was done within the x-ray container on the Citadel Hospital,” counsel questioned and witness said it was done in and out of the x-ray container.

Asked whether the witness watched specifically the June 22, 2018, video, among the series of videos captured by Staff Sergeant Sule Awarf, the star witness, of the meetings to discuss the alleged plot given to the team by the military, the witness answered in the affirmative.

Defence Counsel: “Did you watch the video of June 22, 2018, when there was a meeting at Next Door Beach Resort?”

“Yes my lords,” the witness said.

“Did you see Corporal Abubakar?” counsel asked and Detective Chief Inspector Nkrumah said, “I saw him in a flash”.

“Can you tell the Court what he said at the meeting?” but the witness said he could not but was quick to add that he was at the meeting.

“You cannot say anything because Abubakar (A7) never attended any meeting for the purpose of overthrowing government on June 22, 2018,” Defense counsel stated.

Witness: “That is not true and I must say that the investigation team did not base evidence only on the recordings and in criminal investigations eyewitness’ accounts is key and, on that day, Sule, an eyewitness said Seidu (A7) was there, LAC Solomon (A8) also said he went to the meeting with A7 and Lance Corporal Godwin Nii Korankye Ankrah, another witness, also said A7 was there. So, the team did not need to see any video that captured him to conclude that he attended the meeting”.

“It is based on what the two and others told you of A7’s presence that is why you are concluding that he was present at the meeting to discuss overthrow of government. I am putting it to you that A7 was not at the Next-Door Beach Resort for a meeting to discuss the overthrow of government as you want the Court to believe.” Defense Counsel said.

Witness: Not true, A7 was at the meeting to discuss the overthrow of the Government.

“And that is why you cannot tell the Court what he specifically said at the meeting,” the lawyer stated but the
witness said, “I was not at the meeting so I cannot say what A7 said but Sule, Ankrah and Solomon (A8) who were present confirmed it.

Defence Counsel said, what the witness had just told the Court was an afterthought but the witness said that was not an afterthought.

Dr Mac Palm, Kafui, Debrah, Johannes Zikpi, Colonel Samuel Kojo Gameli, Warrant Officer Class Two Esther Saan, Corporal Abubakar, LAC Solomon, Corporal Akanpewon and Assistant Commissioner of Police Dr Benjamin Agordzo are being held of charges such as conspiracy, high treason, possession of arms and abetment.
They have all denied their varied charges and have been granted bail.

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