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14.01.2005 General News

Tsatsu's case adjourned to February 17

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Accra, Jan. 14, GNA - A Fast Track High Court (FTC) in Accra has fixed Friday, February 17 for mentioning of the case in which Tsatsu Tsikata, Former Chief Executive of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), is charged with wilfully causing financial loss of 2.3 billion cedis to the state.

The adjournment was at the instance of the defence team. Major (Rtd) Rowland S. Agbenato, one of the two counsel for Tsatsu, presented a mail to the court to inform it that the accused person and Prof. E.V.O. Dankwa, leading counsel, were out of the country. The mail also apologised for their absence.

The accused is also charged with another count of intentionally misapplying public property, contrary to Section 1(2) of the Public Property Protection Decree 1977 (SMCD140). He has denied the charges.

Tsatsu has been admitted to a 700 million-cedi self-recognisance bail.

The defence team, under the instructions of their client, had earlier raised objection to a directive from the FTC to Tsatsu to open his defence.

The defence team had argued that the FTC could not hear the case, while it had filed an application at the Supreme Court asking it to review its ruling on their submission of no case and stay of proceedings at the FTC.

In March 2003, the FTC overruled the submission of no case filed by Tsatsu and ordered that he should open his defence in the case. Tsatsu then filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal in November 2004, which was dismissed on the grounds that it lacked merit and therefore ordered him to go back to the FTC to open his defence. He filed an appeal to challenge the Appeal Court's ruling at the Supreme Court and this was also overruled.

The accused has since gone to the Supreme Court for a review, where he is seeking relief from the Supreme Court to quash its earlier decision and order and to uphold his submission of no case.

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