The Accra High Court has refused a request by the lawyer for Mr. James Gyakye Quayson to stay the criminal trial of his client Mr. Quayson, pending the by-elections in Assin-North scheduled for Tuesday, June 27.
The Judge, Justice Mary Maame Ekue Yanzuh, held that the plea by the lawyer was erroneous in the legal proceedings and could not be granted.
The Court subsequently scheduled June 20 for the continuation of the trial. The former Assin-North MP is standing trial on charges of perjury and forgery.
Mr. Justine Terriwajjah, Counsel for Mr. James Gyakye Quayson, argued that his client, the NDC Parliamentary Candidate for the Assin-North by-election, is on a national duty ahead of the election, hence the need to halt the trial until after the by-election.
This, he says, will allow his client to have an opportunity to campaign. However, the Attorney-General, Mr. Godfred Yeboah Dame, opposed the prayer. He held that nobody had given Mr. Quayson a national assignment. The AG also argued that, per the charges leveled against Mr. Quayson, he could be convicted and jailed if found guilty, hence the need for the case to proceed expeditiously.
He, therefore, prayed for the court to hear the case on daily basis, starting next week. Mr. James Gyakye Quayson is facing five counts of deceit of public officer, forgery of passport or travel certificate, knowingly making a false statutory declaration, perjury, and false declaration for office. He has pleaded not guilty to all five criminal charges and is currently on a GHc100, 000 bail bond.
He is in court over issues of his alleged dual citizenship, when he contested the 2020 Parliamentary elections. The State holds the view that Mr Quayson allegedly made a false statement to the Passport Office that he did not hold a passport to another country at the time he applied for a Ghanaian passport.
He has also been accused of making false declaration to the Electoral Commission that he did not owe any allegiance to a foreign country when he filed to contest as Parliamentary candidate for his constituency.
The State started criminal proceedings against Mr. Gyakye Quayson after Richard Takyi-Mensah petitioned the Police over his actions.