The contempt case filed by businessman, Alfred Agbesi Woyome, against Anthony Abaryifa-Karbo, Kweku Baako, Multimedia Group Ltd, Despite Group of Companies (Proprietors of Peace Fm/Peacefmonline) and Citi FM, for criminal contempt at the Court of Appeal, comes on tomorrow with surprises up the sleeves of the parties, including the Chief Justice (CJ).
But The Herald, has picked up information that the CJ, Georgina Theodora Wood, would not constitute a full Court of Appeal bench of three justices to hear the case filed on behalf of Mr. Woyome by Lawyer David Annan.
Sources close to the respondents indicate that, they are going to put up spirited legal augments to rebut Mr. Woyome’s case, to have the court have a single judge to dismiss it.
However, the legal team of Mr. Woyome, The Herald, has learnt is also up with a technical surprise to spring up tomorrow, when the case is called.
The contempt application filed by one of his lawyers, David Annan, is citing the respondents variously for engaging in acts that was and are calculated to “prejudice the due administration of justice in general and in particular the judgment of the Court of Appeal in the case of the Republic Vrs Alfred Agbesi Woyome with suit number H2/17/15 delivered on the 10 of March 2016 …”
The particulars of contempt filed by Lawyer Annan states that, the conduct of the Respondents in the matter, constitutes a direct or indirect disrespect to the Appeal Court, and a naked intention and choice to scandalize the entire Court of Appeal, its Judges and the Parties in the case.
It is the claim of the plaintiff, (Mr. Alfred Agbesi Woyome) that the conduct of Anthony Karbo, Kweku Baako, and the three media houses cited, to have aided and abetted them to make disparaging pronouncements before, during or after the determination of the judgment of the Court of Appeal was deliberately aimed at inciting public opinion against him (the plaintiff) and/or to impede the administration of justice, impair the authority of the judiciary or to erode public confidence in the administration of law and justice by the Court of Appeal.
The Plaintiff in his reliefs is praying the court to charge the Respondents guilty, and make them to purge themselves, apologize and retract and pay a fine and/or give security of good behavior, or they be committed into custody as the court may deem fit.
The case will be heard at the Court of Appeal on July 26, 2016.
First Respondent, Mr. Abaryifa-Karbo, who happens to be a deputy communications director of the NPP, is said to have mentioned on TV3 New Day programme and live on 3FM, a subsidiary radio station of the Media General (MG) company, on 2nd April 2016 that “there is major collusion in Government, people are in cahoots with Mr. woyome, these monies were paid Fraudulently, an attorney general failed to defend the state and as a result a judgment was secured” adding that “what we care about is a man has stolen our money, fraudulently government came out to defend and justify this theft…”
Mr. Abaryifa-Karbo, a former youth organizer of the party according to the particulars of the contempt filed, justified reports in the media that Mr. Woyome was confrontation and insulted at a public place.
“Supreme Court says that look beyond the Fraud. Fraudulent Payments …woyome is walking free in this country, am told somebody nearly attacked him at the mall indeed such attacks should also face him all the time. …we will continue to taunt woyome until he pays this money”, he allegedly said.
On Adabraka-based Citi FM, on Tuesday 12 April 2016, published on the station’s website citifmonline.com and on ghanaweb.com, on April 12 2016 headlined, “Empty threats can’t silence us Karbo”, the first Respondent assured he would continue to speak about how plaintiff was fraudulently paid the 51million Ghana Cedis in judgment debt in 2010, until the money is retrieved.
Again on Peace FM and published on the station’s website, peacefmonline.com on March 13 2015, members of the Despite Group of Companies, the NPP’s
parliamentary nominee for Lawra in the Upper East Region,, described Woyome’s acquittal as the “biggest conspiracy, the biggest political scandal in the history of this country since 1957. This will qualify for a classic Hollywood movie”.
He continued “NDC people are trying so hard to equate the Freed Woyome case to other Court cases that people have gone to Court and have been freed.
But the circumstances are different, the circumstances are completely different…this is an INSULT to the conscience of Ghanaians this particular case.
lt is a major scar on national consciousness (major scar). The whole world will laugh at Ghana”.
On the same Peace FM, Mr. Baako, who is a regular panelist on Wednesdays, said “The court of Appeal even thinks it unnecessary but the truth is that we want to say this scandal; I am not sure there is any scandal more in the corruption history of this country…it is incredible.
Mr. Baako stated in parts, ” l respect the court and l have no right to scandalize the Court BUT l think I have every right to criticize verdicts that are given by the court… I vehemently disagree with this thing. It is making this country look like a banana republic which we are not. It is a vote for impunity which should not be countenanced.
If we are not careful it can lead to a situation where people will think the Court mean nothing.
Meanwhile, the veteran journalist has expressed his readiness to meet Mr. Woyome in court to state his position. Speaking on Metro TV’s Good Morning Ghana yesterday, Mr. Baako answered in the affirmative when he was asked if he was aware of the suit against him and the others.
According to him, he has received the summon and has handed it to his lawyer, Egbert Faible jnr for direction. He served notice that he still stands by whatever he said in the media and that, he will be in court to argue them out.
The third Respondent which happens to be Despite Company Limited, operators of Accra-based Peace FM, Peacefmonline, is accused of offering it platform ‘Kokroko’ morning show to 3rd Respondent facilitated encouraged aided and abetted 1st Respondent to the above mentioned utterances.
The plaintiff argued in the summon, “That peace FM 104.3 who are under the ownership direction and control of the 3rd respondent anticipated in the deliberate vilification of the Judiciary and hosting promoting and aiding 1” and 2nd Respondents by acting together for a common purpose was and still is to lower the administration of Justice, scandalize the Judiciary Parties and their Counsel, and thereby induce disrespect scorn and opprobrium in the minds of the public in order to incite public anger and violence against the court.
Following Despite Company Limited is the 4th Respondent which is the Kokomlemle-based Joy FM and it sister online portal, myjoyonline.com.
The station with affiliates in parts of the country, is accused of offering it platform on Saturday March 12, 2016 on it newsfile programme as having promoted encouraged facilitated and enabled 2nd Respondent to make and broadcast publicly.
The 5th Respondent is OMNI Media, owners of Citi FM, which is accused of granting the 1st and 2nd Respondents, the audience to spew contumacious conducts.