The case of Adamu Dramani Sakande, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bawku Central who is standing trial for allegedly having dual citizenship, was yesterday adjourned at the instance of the MP’s defense team.
The MP was undergoing further cross-examination by Rexford Anthony Wiredu, Principal State Attorney when Yoni Kulendi, lead counsel for the defense team asked the court for an adjournment to enable them to properly assess a document that the prosecution is seeking to tender through their client.
The document being tendered by the prosecution is seeking to counter other documents earlier tendered in evidence by the MP to indicate that he renounced his British citizenship before becoming MP in Ghana.
When the MP mounted the witness stand, Mr. Wiredu said “My Lord we are going to continue further cross-examination but before this I have something to say,” and just as he was about to speak, Mr. Kulendi objected saying the prosecutor was not entitled to make comments that are prejudicial to the trial.
Justice Charles Quist, the trial judge therefore asked the Principal State Attorney to continue with his cross-examination whilst laying the foundation for his case.
Prosecution: You were in court on October 15, 2010
MP: Yes my Lord.
Prosecution: You tendered exhibits.
MP: Yes (after refreshing his memory of the kinds of document he tendered.)
Prosecution: You were also here when I asked the court for an adjournment to go and verify your documents.
My Kulendi at this point cut in to say that it is on record that the court sat on the case on October 15, 2010 and therefore there was no relevance in the question but Mr. Wiredu insisted on the question and presented a document to the accused indicating the results of the investigations the prosecution carried out.
Defense counsel immediately objected to the tendering of the documents through the MP saying the prosecution could not seek to adduce fresh evidence after closing its case.
“I object to the request to show documents which the prosecution claims it obtained in its effort to verify documents tendered by the accused in his defense. This is not a prosecution presenting its case,” Mr. Kulendi argued.
He then asked for the case to be stood down for a few minutes to enable them to go through the document saying “I anticipated this problem so I have documents in my car to counter it.”
After the case resumed, Mr. Kulendi rather asked for an adjournment until today so that they can adequately study and challenge the document the prosecution is seeking to tender through the MP and the court granted the request. Mr. Wiredu said he was not objecting to the request and said he was ever ready for the trial on any day.
Mr. Dramani was on July 31, 2009, put before the court, charged with nine counts relating to his nationality, perjury, forgery of passport, election fraud and deceiving public officers to be elected as an MP but he pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
On July 8, 2010, he was exonerated on six of those charges and is currently facing three charges of false declaration of office or voting, perjury and deceiving a public officer.
He has since been granted a GH˘10,000 bail with one surety and his Ghanaian passport deposited at the Court Registry as part of the bail conditions.
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