One of the 14 persons accused of killing Major Maxwell Adam Mahama has testified that he only touched the trousers of the military officer but did not play any role in his lynching.
Emmanuel Badu, who identified himself as a mason, said on May 29, 2017, he was passing through Denkyira Obuasi in the Central Region on his way to Sefwi Bekwai for work when he saw a crowd chasing a supposed armed robber and that, although he picked a stone, he did not throw it, nor did he partake in the lynching.
When queried by the prosecutor, Frances Mullen Ansah, a Chief State Attorney, that he (Badu) took an active part in the lynching and pelted Major Mahama with stones, the accused person insisted that he only touched the trousers of the soldier and asked him (Major Mahama) where he came from.
Badu, who is the 12th accused person, made the assertions at the High Court in Accra Monday, when he opened his defense, reports Graphic Online’s Emmanuel Ebo Hawkson from the court.
Major Mahama was killed at Denkyira Obuasi in the Central Region on May 29, 2017.
He was said to have been lynched during a morning walk that led him to the community.
Fourteen people, including the then Assembly member for the area, William Baah, are standing trial in connection with the death of the military officer.
They have all pleaded not guilty to charges ranging from murder, abetment to murder, and conspiracy to commit murder.
Led by his lawyer, George Bernard Shaw, Badu told the court that he was arrested at Elubo in the Western Region after the killing of Major Mahama.
During a cross–examination, Badu confirmed to the court that he indeed told the police that on May 29, 2017, he was traveling from Ayanfuri to Sefwi Bekwai in a commercial car but the vehicle was caught up in traffic at Denkyira Obuasi.
According to him, he got to know that the traffic was a result of an armed robber who was being chased by the townsfolk, a situation, which, he said, made people in the car run helter-skelter.
The accused person further confirmed that he saw some people chasing the said ‘armed robber’ with sticks and stones and, therefore, he decided to follow them.
Mrs. Mullen Ansah then put to the accused person that he took an active part in the lynching and that he (Badu) told the police in his statement that he picked a stone to throw at Major Mahama.
That was strongly objected to by Mr. Shaw, who accused the prosecutor of misleading the court, adding that what his client told the police and as captured in the statement was that he had the intention to throw the stone but did not throw the stone.
The presiding judge, Justice Mariama Owusu, a Justice of the Supreme Court with additional responsibility as a Justice of the High Court, overruled the objection and told counsel that he should allow the accused person to answer the question and not answer the question for him.
The prosecutor further put to the accused person that he was a cardinal player in the lynching, which he denied.
Below is an excerpt of what ensued in court
Prosecutor: I’m putting it to you that on May 29, 2917, you took an active part in the lynching of Major Mahama
Badu: That is not true. I even left the scene before I heard that he was dead.
Prosecutor: You chased Major Mahama with a stone and eventually hit him with a stone
Badu: That is not true
Prosecutor: I’m putting it to you that you acted together with the other accused persons to intentionally cause unlawful harm to Captain Mahama which resulted in his death.
Badu: That is not true. I do not come from the town and do not reside in that town. I was in a vehicle passing through the town.
The hearing continues on May 22, this year for the remaining accused persons to open their defense.