“My Client Sells Onions Not Grenades”- Lawyer

Defence Counsel for one of the three persons who were arrested in connection seven grenades at Kwashieman has told an Accra Central District Court that his client sells onions in large consignments at Agbogbloshie market and not grenades.

Mr George Asamaney, counsel for Osman Alhassan, in a bail application argued that charge of possession of explosives was not indictable under the law and prayed the court to admit his client to bail.

He said it was untrue that his client was unemployed, adding Alhassan sells large quantities of onions on the market.

Mr Asamaney made the submission when Ismail Ali Musah, 32 years, Abdul Karim Yakubu, 30 years, and Osman Alhassan 33 years, appeared before the court.

They have been charged with possessing explosives.
Arguing the bail application, Mr Asamaney said his client’s freedom had been curtailed since he was arrested on January 15, this year.

According to him whenever one was arraigned, the court had the discretion to admit that person to bail pending trial and also the accused is given the opportunity to plead to charges.

He said on this score his client after his arrest has not been given the opportunity to plead.

Defence counsel argued that the court can only decline bail when it was satisfied that the accused person would not appear before it to stand trial.

According to defence counsel, his client has a fixed place of abode and has sureties in court to execute his bail terms.

Mr Asamaney said Alhassan was arrested in his house after Musah had visited him.

Prosecuting, Detective Chief Inspector Simon Apiorsornu strongly opposed to the bail application saying discreet investigations was still on going.

Mr Apiorsornu said it would be premature for the court to admit the accused persons to bail.

Prosecution explained that if the accused persons were admitted to bail they might temper with investigations adding that “as we speak now we have to be travelling with the accused persons and if they were released on bail we would have not them in our custody to assist investigations.”

According to prosecution the matter before the court was of national security and the accused persons were before the lower court for only committals.

Prosecution noted that the freedoms spelt out in Chapter 5 of the 1992 Constitution were not absolute.

The Prosecution said those freedoms were subject to limitation considering chapter 14 of the 1992 Constitution.

Prosecution said accomplices of the accused persons were scattered and the Police were doing all it could to bring them to book.

The court presided over by Mr Ebenezer Kweku Ansah declined the bail application, saying since one does not easily come by grenades the issues at hand had security implications.

According to the judge, he was mindful of Article 14 of the 1992 Constitution and Section 96 (4) (9) Criminal Procedure code.

The matter has been adjourned to February 16.

The case of prosecution was that the three accused persons were arrested in a house behind the Kata Hostel at Kwashieman following a tip off.

The Prosecution said the Police arrested Yakubu at the Kata Hostel with the seven grenades and when he was quizzed, he disclosed that he bought it from Musah and Alhassan.

According to Prosecution, Yakubu led the Police to arrest Musah and Alhassan.