A brother of the 36-year-old man convicted for attempting to assassinate President Mahama says the BNI had information Charles Antwi had previously been treated for mental illness.
Charles Antwi was arrested last Sunday for carrying a gun to the Ringway Gospel Centre branch of the Assemblies of God Church, where President Mahama and his family fellowship.
He was jailed 10 years yesterday without a lawyer, and some lawyers have criticized the trial judge for violating the suspect’s constitutional rights.
Prior to his sentence, the prosecution had told the presiding judge that Charles Antwi was mentally sound, but his brother Kwame Opoku, with whom Charles lived before the incident, has exclusively told Joy News he led officials of the BNI to the Tafo Government Hospital where the convict had previously sought treatment for mental illness.
Joy News’ Kwetey Nartey who visited the convict’s brother said Kwame Opoku was invited to the BNI offices when the brother was arrested.
He told Joy News during the interrogation, the investigators realised Charles’ statement was not adding up. This prompted the security agency to follow him to the hospital and his hometown to ascertain his true state of mind.
According to Kwame Opoku, the security officials were told at the hospital, at a taxi station where the brother worked, by a fetish priest and the mother that Charles Antwi was mentally unstable, and has been for five years now.
He said Charles had travelled to Italy en route Libya but was deported. He said it was when he arrived in Ghana that they later detected that he was having a mental condition.
According to him, all efforts by the family to get Charles healed have not been successful as his unstableness kept recurring. He had on some occasions threatened to kill his own mother, Kwame Opoku recounted.
While in Accra, Mr. Opoku said Charles lived a normal life without the least suspicion of his intention to assassinate Ghana’s president. He never sighted a gun on him or spotted one in his belongings.
All along, he said, Charles has been telling him plans to travel back to Libya with the support of a friend.
Anytime Charles goes out like he did on Sunday, the thinking has always been that he was working on his travelling arrangement, Opoku noted.
He was, therefore, surprised when news broke that his brother’s interior motive was to oust the first gentleman of the land.
Whilst he languishes in jail, Kwame Opoku said the family is yet to meet and take the necessary steps that would ensure his release from prison.
Meanwhile, many have criticised Charles Antwi’s incarceration due to his mental condition.
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