The Supreme Court has sentenced the three contemnors in the Montie FM case to four months imprisonment. The trio; Alistair Nelson, Godwin Ako Gunn, and Host of the ‘Pampaso’ political show, Salifu ‘Mugabe’ Maase were jailed Wednesday after they were found guilty for issuing death threats to judges of the Supreme Court.
Reading the sentences, the presiding judge, Sophia Akuffo, said the two panelists willfully issued the threats on the judges including the Chief Justice. Justice Akuffo also said they lowered the authority of the court by insisting that they will not accept its judgement on a controversial matter of the voter’s register.
She also said the owners were careless in their submissions to the court, as they appeared to have little or no interest in what transpired on their radio station.
The three were also fined Ghc30,000, with each of them paying Ghc10,000. Also, owners of the Accra based radio station were fined GHc 60,000, to be paid to the court tomorrow Thursday, July 28, or face a jail term of one month. They were also ordered to provide measures they would put in place to prevent such inflammatory comments on the radio station.
The three Montie FM contemnors were immediately taken away in a Police van to the prison where they would serve their sentence.
On June 29, Alistair Nelson and Godwin Ako Gunn, who were panelists on ‘Pampaso’ programme threatened to ‘finish’ supreme Court Judges if they made any judgement against the Electoral Commission in the case challenging the voters’ register validity.
They went as far as threatening that the judges would suffer the fate of the three members of the bench who were shot to death and burnt on June 30, 1982 in the era of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC).
Court had issued a warrant for the owners of the station, host of the station’s ‘Pampaso’ programme, and the panelists. At the second hearing last week, the accused persons were found guilty of contempt.
One of the contemnors, Nelson had apologised to the apex court for his utterances claiming he was under the influence of a strange disease called kpokpogbligbli. He explained that kpokpogbligbli is an unknown disease that takes over a person’s body and controls what he says and does. Also, host of the show, Mugabe, pleaded with the judges to forgive him as he has been a journalist of good repute for 15 years.
Notwithstanding all their excuses and pleas, the Montie FM group have received what seem to be the most lenient punishments the court could dish out to them for their careless actions.