The Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mr. Godfred Yeboah Dame, disclosed this in his response to a question posed by the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tongu, Mr. Samuel Okudjeto Ablakwa.
Mr. Ablakwa sought to find out the status of the pursuit of justice in some unresolved murder cases in the country. The cases include those of Ahmed Suale, Mr. J. B. Danquah Adu, Mr. Ekow Hayford, and Professor Emmanuel Benneh.
In the case of Ahmed Hussein-Suale, Mr. Dame said he had not been briefed on the matter.
He said the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), however, paid a courtesy call on him on March 29, this year, and being concerned about the failure to resolve that and the other homicides, he enquired about the state of investigations into them.
“I emphasized to the IGP and his team the need to conclude investigations for action to be taken as soon as practically possible,” he stated.
Hussein-Suale, an investigative journalist with Tiger Eye P.I., was assassinated on January 16, 2019, near his family home in Madina, Accra.
The murder is presumed to be linked with his work.
Mr. J. B. Danquah, who was the MP for Abuakwa North in the Eastern Region, was murdered in 2016, with police investigations leading to the arrest of Daniel Asiedu, who is currently standing trial.
Mr. Dame said the trial of the accused was ongoing in the High Court, presided over by Her Ladyship Lydia Osei Marfo.
He said the case was pending before the same court, then presided over by Justice Buadi who was later transferred to Ho.
“While this case was pending before him, an order was made for the first accused person to be examined by a psychiatrist to ascertain whether he is fit to stand trial. The psychiatrist concluded that the first accused was fit to stand trial,” he stated.
He said the prosecution had so far called two witnesses who had been cross-examined, with an intention to call nine witnesses.
Mr. Ekow Hayford, who was the MP for Mfantseman, was also killed in 2020, during a highway robbery incident.
The MP, who was returning from a campaign late at night, was shot by the robbers after his driver allegedly attempted to drive through the robbery scene.
Mr. Dame said on May 10, this year, a robbery attack similar to what claimed the life of the MP took place, during which the police were quick to react by opening fire. They subsequently killed one of the robbers and arrested the rest.
The A-G said further investigations revealed that the robbers were the same people involved in the robbery that killed Mr. Hayford.
He said the police on July 13, this year, conducted an identification parade involving the three suspects.
The Attorney-General said a number of victims, including some of the occupants of the late MP’s vehicle, identified them as the armed men who robbed them.
“Investigations have revealed that the late MP was shot by Mohammed who is now deceased.
“The suspects, who are in custody, having been convicted of an earlier offense, have been arraigned on charges of conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit robbery and robbery,” Mr. Dame said.
Murder of university don
In the case of Prof. Benneh, Mr. Dame said in the course of investigations, three suspects were arrested, with the first suspect, Mr. James Nana Womba, who is believed to have strangled Prof. Benneh to death, dying while in police custody.
He said after investigations had been concluded, the docket was forwarded to the A-G’s Department, which recommended the prosecution of the suspects.
“On May 21, 2021, a bill of indictment was filed to commence the prosecution of the second suspect, Ebenezer Kwayisi. The third suspect, Opambuor Agya Badu Nkwansah, was discharged after a study of the docket revealed that he was not at the scene of the crime when the offense was committed although he was invited by James Womba to help him rob the deceased,” he explained.
He said the second suspect had been charged with abetment of murder, with his committal held at the Kaneshie District Court, which committed him to the High Court for trial.
“The prosecution is waiting for the notice of arraignment at the High Court for the trial of the accused,” he said.