The trial and subsequent conviction of miss Rosemond Brown other wise known as Akuapem Poloo has as expected been met with varied insinuations and unfounded allegations without recourse to the laws of our land by a large section of the public following her 90 days custodial sentence given by Mrs Christiana Cann, the judge who sat on the case. Many Ghanaians including astute law practitioners have described the 90 day jail term handed her as harsh which partly is in sync with my position though not in it's entirety.
Before i further with this opinion piece of mine, let me state emphatically and without any shred of equivocation that, this piece is solely based on my "hearsay law knowledge i had from the principal streets of Damongo and not one from a learned counsel.
Fast forward, many a Ghanaian are of the view that Ms. Brown even on the back of the fact that, she is a first-time offender, should have been given an alternative sentence / a lenient custodial sentence preferably a fine or two weeks jail term considering the fact that she has a boy of age seven staging their argument (s) on the back that her crime is not a felony but misdemeanor.
Admittedly, the spate of nudity on the Ghanaian social media space as maintained by the judge is on the ascendency but must Ms. Brown be used as an escape goat to serve as a deterrent to others? Rightly so in my candid opinion but am instead for a lenient custodial sentence but am however surprised over the judge's lack of concern for Akuapem Poloo's son.
Ms. Brown who is widely known for such acts i understand was sentenced on her own plea on charges of publications of obscene material and domestic violence of which section 280 and 281 and it's entails frowns on limiting the court from proving her guilt to a certain extent as has become public knowledge by an Accra circuit court.
What are the dictates of the Laws of our land pertaining madam Rosemond Brown's crime especially on act 29 of 1960 ( criminal offences Act )
Summary extracts from section 280 and it's adjoins connotes that possession of absence material in every form ( films, pictures, posters etc ) for the purpose of publications or exhibition is abhorred on by our laws or in short, the dictates of our law (s) abhorred sexism in public in every form and whoever is directly or the vice versa involved in it's publication, advertisement and procurement shall be charged for misdemeanor.
Her crime per the above extract from our laws amounts to three (3) years jail term for it is only misdemeanor and not felony of which the judge could have justifiably applied to it's full brim but the judge in her own wisdom sentenced her to a ninety-day jail term only but, however stressing that, it's to serve as a deterrent to her " colleagues" which is partly justifiable as against the up to three (3) years jail term the law provides for instances such this.
But is Ms. Akuapem Poloo's conviction justifiable as against similar and if not aggravating issues that went unpunished in this country?
Presently as we speak in Ghana, a "pro party vigilante" is serving a jail term for snatching a ballot box whiles a brainless sitting Member of Parliament whose decision to snatch ballot papers which brought the name of Parliament into disrepute is left off the hook for reasons best known to the powers that be.
An all of a sudden remorseful member of Parliament who also doubles as a minister is equally left off the hook in bizarre circumstances after publicly admitting to shooting at unarmed crowd.
For those who are still not convinced about my position on the issue therein, am not entirely against Ms. Brown's conviction but am wholeheartedly against selective justice as rightly posited by Manasseh Azure, "Ghanaians are not against the enforcement of laws. They are against the selective application of laws".
We must also congratulate Child Right International Ghana for their commendable decision to send this case to the appropriate "forum"
By; Ezekiel Abdul Aziz
Email: [email protected]
The writer holds a B.A. in Ghanaian Language Education (Gonja ) with Linguistics as a second subject area from the prestigious University of Education, Winneba and he is also a Radio/TV presenter from Damongo in the Savannah Region aspiring to become a Lecturer.