Apply rule of law in Barker-Vormawor’s treason felony case – Cambridge University

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The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, Professor Stephen J Toope has written to Ghanaian authorities to express concern about the wellbeing of Mr Oliver Barker-Vormawor, a PhD student at the University who has been charged with treason felony.

A notice issued on the University’s website before Barker-Vormawor was granted bail on Thursday said the Vice-Chancellor had written to the Ghanaian authorities to express his concern for Oliver’s welfare, requesting that the rule of law is applied and that he (Oliver) be granted access to a fair trial.

Per the notice, Oliver’s legal team had warned the university that there had been breaches of due process in his treatment.

“Students and staff at the University of Cambridge remain deeply concerned about the wellbeing of Oliver Barker-Vormawor, a PhD student at the University of Cambridge, who was arrested on 11 February at Kotoka International Airport, in Ghana, and subsequently charged with treason felony,” the notice said.

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“Oliver’s legal team in Ghana have warned that there have been breaches of due process in his treatment. This has been confirmed by other independent sources. The Vice-Chancellor has written to Ghanaian authorities to express his concern for Oliver’s welfare, requesting that the rule of law be applied and that Oliver be granted access to a fair trial. The University is closely monitoring developments”.

Bail

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Mr Barker-Vormawor was granted bail on Tuesday but successfully executed the conditions of his bail bond – GH¢2 million with two sureties, one of which was to present documents covering a landed property – on Thursday.

He was held in police custody for over a month on a charge of treason felony in connection with alleged social media posts over the government’s efforts to impose a levy on electronic transactions.

In an alleged Facebook post, Mr Barker-Vormawor was said to have indicated, “If this e-levy is passed, I will do the coup myself,” a comment, the state deemed to be a first-degree felony, leading to his arrest on February 11, 2022, at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) when he arrived in the country for an engagement with the diplomatic community.

Lawyers for Mr Barker-Vormawor during the period filed processes at the High Court and the Supreme Court in attempts to get the police to put him before a court of competent jurisdiction having been remanded by the Ashaiman District Court.

His legal team led by Mr Akoto Ampaw and Dr Justice Srem-Sai considered his detention as a violation of his right to liberty.

Students and staff at the University of Cambridge remain deeply concerned about the wellbeing of Oliver Barker-Vormawor, a PhD student at the University of Cambridge, who was arrested on 11 February at Kotoka International Airport, in Ghana, and subsequently charged with treason felony.

Oliver’s legal team in Ghana have warned that there have been breaches of due process in his treatment. This has been confirmed by other independent sources. The Vice-Chancellor has written to Ghanaian authorities to express his concern for Oliver’s welfare, requesting that the rule of law be applied and that Oliver be granted access to a fair trial. The University is closely monitoring developments. We welcome the news that Oliver was granted bail by a court on 16 March but we note with concern that, according to the latest information we have received, Oliver has not yet been released on bail.

Credit: Graphic Online

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