Accra, Dec. 8, GNA- A judge has warned that Ghanaians who aid foreigners to procure Ghanaian Passports would be handed down a custodial sentence should they appear before her.
Ms. Ama Adomako Kwakye, the presiding Judge at the Kaneshie District Court gave the warning after she had convicted Moses Agbezuger to pay a fine of GH840 or in default serve two months imprisonment for abetting Obina John Ukah, aka John Patu, a Nigerian claiming to be a Marine Engineer to secure a Ghanaian passport.
According to the court it took into consideration the plea for mitigation and aggravating factors before convicting Agbezuger, who changed his plea from not guilty to guilty.
Counsel for Agbezuger had also prayed the court to hand down a non-custodial sentence to the accused, since he was a father of seven, who has shown remorse, adding that, his client was also a first time offender and sentencing him to jail would bring hardship to the wife and kids.
The Prosecution had told the court that Agbezuger abetted Obinna John Ukah, the 29 year-old Nigerian to secure a Ghanaian passport in March this year.
Ukah was held for attempting to obtain Ghanaian Passport through false declarations, and also to obtained for himself a Ghana Birth Certificate and then entered the country.
The court had earlier convicted and sentenced Ukah to a fine of GH840 in default serve two months.
Prosecution’s case was that Ukah is from Imo state while Agbezuger is a 56 year old Ghanaian. Both marine Engineers.
Prosecution said the two accused were arrested at the Passport Application Centre (PAC) at Tema on June 23, this year when Ukah in the company of Agbezuger submitted an application for a Ghanaian Passport at the center.
They were both referred to the Ghana Immigration Service headquarters for further investigations.
Prosecution said investigations established that Ukah was indeed a Nigerian who entered Ghana somewhere in January this year through unapproved routes along the Eastern frontier and had since remained in Ghana without any immigration permit.
Prosecution said investigation showed Ukah was known as Obinna John Ukah and not John Patu as he claimed to be and that all information on the Ghanaian Birth Certificate including the names of parents and nationality were false.
The Prosecution said Agbezuger said he had completed and paid for the Ghana passport Application form for Ukah and accompanied him to PAC and that he invited Ukah to come to Ghana so that they could work with a firm in the country