ASEPA’s Mensah Thompson narrates his ordeal in cells

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Mensah Thompson, Executive Director, Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA), has been detailing his ordeal at the police cells when he was arrested and charged with the publication of false news.

According to him, after he received the police invitation, he was preparing to go to the CID Headquarters with his lawyers when he was called not to go to the CID Headquarters but rather to a police station located in Teshie a suburb of Accra.

Speaking on Metro TV’s ‘One on One’ with Bridget Otoo, Thompson indicated that he told his lawyers that he was uncomfortable with the change of plans by the police so his lawyers spoke with the CID, indicating that because there has been a change in arrangement, they will also need some time to prepare before going to the police station in Teshie.

“So, my lawyer took the number of the said Teshie Police Station and reached out to the district commander and said, we’ve been asked to report to you but because of time arrangement, we cannot make it and that my client is writing exams, as soon as, he is done with his exam, we will report; so we asked for two weeks and they agreed,” Mensah Thompson recounted.

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He continued: “When we got to Teshie, the police told us that an arrest warrant has been secured on January 30 – that’s the time we had an arrangement with the police; they went to court two or three days after – they showed me the arrest warrant.

“The district commander under whose watch the case was pending had no idea about the court warrant…so, they said, I should write a statement and I did; after the police told us that, they have to make a call and get instructions on what to do next.

“After the call, the police said, ‘order from above said I should be detained and [be] taken to court the following day’ – where asked where is the above but nobody told us where the above is [sic].

“You could see the police were working under the instructions of somebody and that person’s wish is that, I will be detained and be taken to court,”

The ASEPA boss noted that, the arrangement the police had with his lawyers is he will be staying at “counter back” and be taken to court the next day.

“Before my lawyers were leaving, I was sitting at the counter back; as soon as my lawyers left, I was bundled and thrown into cells and locked up in a very deplorable condition,” Mensah Thompson said.

He indicated that, he wouldn’t wish anybody to experience what he experienced in cells at the Teshie police station.

Background

Mensah Thompson alleged that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo together with his relatives had used the Presidential aircraft of the Ghana Armed Forces for a shopping trip to the United Kingdom in December 2021.

That was not his only claim, he alleged further, the trip between December 20 to 30 was also joined by the president’s friends.

He thus demanded explanations from the National Security, Ghana Armed Forces and the Defense Ministry over the use of the presidential jet.

But the Ghana Armed Forces debunked the claims, discredited the reportage and asked the general public to disregard it.

In an interesting twist, however, Mensah Thompson backtracked on his claims and rendered an unqualified apology for peddling the false claims.

“In the same medium I made the earlier publication, I withdraw the publication pending an official response from the GCAA. I unreservedly apologise to the Ghana Armed Forces if their image was in any way affected by my publication. We shall put out for your consumption the response to our request from the GCAA records of the Falcon 900-EX.”, he posted on social media.

Mensah Thompson was granted bail after pleading not guilty to two criminal charges.

The Police have charged him with the publication of false news and offensive conduct conducive to the breach of peace.

The Police Prosecutor in charge of the case, Inspector Ebenezer Tei Okuffo, prayed the court to remand Mr. Thompson, arguing that he was to assist with the investigation.

The Prosecutor said the accused had once already refused to honour the invitation of the police, only to turn himself in when an arrest warrant was issued against him, hence he might not present himself to the police for further investigation.

He had earlier described Mensah Thompson’s post as inciting, stating that it could bring bodily harm to the family of the President should the youth go irate as a result of the post.

Lawyer of the accused, Victor Kojogah Adawudu, debunked the assertions of the prosecutor on the grounds that Mensah Thompson had only failed to honour the police invitation because he was writing an exam at that time.

Mensah Thompson was later granted a GHc50,000 bail

ghanaweb.com

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