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Madina MP Accuses Police Of Fraud

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Controversial NDC Member of Parliament for Madina, Francis Xavier Sosu, has attacked the Ghana Police Service, saying they used ‘fraudulent’ means to charge him for court.

“Let me quickly serve a notice, even that criminal summons was made without due process and due regards to law.  You cannot accuse a person if you have not heard from the person because you don’t charge people in absentia. So how you even came by an accusation and a charge is very fraudulent,” he said at the end of the budget presentation by the Finance Minister on Wednesday.

Disregarding Summons

The NDC MP has refused to honour a court summons that was instigated by the police as they pressed charges of obstruction of public way, causing damage to other road users and unlawful damage against him.

He has been absent in court on two occasions and in each case, the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has written to the court to inform the judge that the MP was on official parliamentary duties outside the jurisdiction.

Bizarrely, the same MP who was said to be outside the jurisdiction was seen in Parliament during the presentation of the budget.

Suing IGP

Instead of honouring the court’s invitation, the MP has rather sued the Inspector General of Police, Dr. George Akuffo Dampare, for the several attempts to arrest him by the police, and is now seeking to restrain the police from arresting him.

The MP averred that attempts by officers of the Ghana Police Service to arrest him following a demonstration he led in his constituency on October 25, infringes on his rights to personal liberty and right to freedom of movement as well as violates and impedes his work as a sitting MP.

The MP said he is seeking the enforcement of his rights to freedom of movement, right to protest and demonstrate, right against arbitrary arrest and detention as well as his right against malicious prosecution.

“I verily believe that I have a right not to be subjected to arbitrary arrest and prosecution in cases where the basis for police intended arrest and prosecution are false, spurious and malicious, I can exercise my right under Article 33 of the 1992 Constitution for protection of those rights by the High Court,” he averred.

He also said he is challenging what he describes as an arbitrary and unfair administrative and attempted criminal proceedings against him which arose out of a legitimate protest and demonstration.

Mr. Sosu in the suit claims that the attempts by the police to arrest him has caused him and his family emotional and psychological trauma and has also greatly affected his work as MP.

He therefore wants “An order that the attempt by the officers of the respondent to arrest me on 28th October, 2021 without telling me the reasons for the arrest, was unlawful.”

His civil case against the IGP has been scheduled for December 13, 2021 whilst the criminal case against him was adjourned until November 29, 2021.

Post-budget Interview

During a post-budget interview, Sosu said that “I will be in court, I am still a lawyer and I go to court. I go to court representing people so if I have to be in court I will be in court.”

He added “If you want to arrest any ordinary citizen, not even a member of Parliament, you must tell the person the reason for the arrest. The Police never told me why they wanted to arrest me. The first attempt to arrest me they never provided any reason.  Guess what,  that failed  and they attempted to arrest  me a second time  in church  and the second attempt failed , that was the only time they  came up with a press  release ostensibly  to now give a reason why they wanted to arrest me. That is not law enforcement.”

He said further that “however, we must be careful not to set wrong precedent. I have been human rights lawyer for the past eleven years and I have been at the forefront of talking about what must be lawful and what is unlawful. Police can arrest and there are basis and there is legal basis for arrest by the Police. Before you arrest a person you must have a suspicion or the crime might have been committed in front of you in your view.

“If you attempt to arrest somebody you should be telling the person for the arrest and reading out the right of the person to the person. If the police fails to do that, that is unlawful arrest.”

Evading Arrest

The Madina MP’s blatant refusal to honour police invitation following the violent scenes recorded during the demonstration he organised on October 25, to push for good roads in his constituency, sparked heated debate on whether or not a Member of Parliament who has committed an offence can be arrested by the police.

Video Evidence

In one video, Sosu was captured instigating the youth to block roads and cause mayhem, and he later run to Parliament to claim that he was being harassed by the police and wanted the officers looking for him rather punished by the legislature.

The police said that during the demonstration which occurred between Ayi Mensah and Amrahia in the Madina Constituency, the youth he had organised, blocked roads and burned tyres, caused destruction to property and even prevented an ambulance carrying a pregnant woman from seeking medical attention at the Dodowa District Hospital.

MP’s Bodyguard

In the ensuing heat, the police said the MP’s bodyguard who is also a policeman, drove dangerously through the crowd and put the lives of some senior officers at the scene in danger.

The policeman has since been interdicted by the Ghana Police Service.

Sosu after causing the chaos then run to Parliament to claim victim and rather caused the Speaker, Alban Bagbin, to invite two top policemen who were instrumental in pressing for his arrest, to the Privileges Committee.

Church Drama

On Sunday, October 31, the police determined to arrest the MP, reportedly swarmed a church in Madina where the MP was said to be preaching, but it was unclear if the law enforcers were there to effect the MP’s arrest.

Some of the NDC MPs thronged the Believers Church at Ritz Junction, Madina, to prevent the police from arresting the MP, and subsequently whisked him away in a vehicle.

Police Clarification

ACP Kwesi Ofori later clarified in a statement that they were not there to arrest the MP but rather to gather intelligence, saying “any plain-clothed police personnel found on the premises of the church may have been there for intelligence purposes and not to effect an arrest.”

Open Support

Mr. Bagbin, addressing participants at the first-ever Speaker’s Breakfast Forum in Kumasi appears to have gone into the case yet to be heard when he said in Kumasi that the attempt to arrest the MP was an “obstruction” since the MP “had gone through all the processes of the public order act.”

He said the MP got permission to stage the demonstration and accused the police of sending another group to arrest the MP.

The Speaker has already written through the Clerk of Parliament to the police informing them he will not release Sosu.

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