Montie Saga 'People are deliberately setting traps for Mahama' - Kwesi Pratt

According to Pratt, even though President John Dramani Mahama has every power within his jurisdiction to free the Montie 3, it must not be done "capriciously".

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play Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr
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Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr. has advised President John Mahama to weigh his options carefully before taking a decision on calls for him to grant a presidential pardon to the three Montie FM contemnors.

According to Pratt, even though President John Dramani Mahama has every power within his jurisdiction to free the Montie 3, it must not be done "capriciously".

"Whichever way the President acts, there is a price to pay. In this particular case, whichever way this president acts, there is a price to pay. Every option will come with a price so he has to weigh his options very carefully. People are deliberately setting traps for the president!” he said on Accra-based Radio Gold.

READ ALSO: Montie 3 have every right to ask for pardon - Amnesty International

The Montie three, Alistair Nelson, Godwin Ako Gunn and Salifu Maase alias ‘Mugabe’ were sentenced to four months in prison by the Supreme Court following contempt proceedings against them.

The contempt proceedings came after the three threatened the Supreme Court judges who sat on the Abu Ramadan and Gary Nimako versus the Electoral Commission case.

A petition book subsequently opened by pro-government group Research and Advocacy Platform (RAP) gathered over 18 million signatories from government appointees including the deputy minister of Education in charge of Tertiary, Sam Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Elizabeth Ofosu-Agyare and the Education Minister, Jane Naana Opoku Agyemang.

The group presented the petition to the Chief of Staff, Julius Debrah, Thursday.

Lawyers for the three contemnors had already presented theirs to the presidency.

READ ALSO: Keep Montie FM trio in jail - Nduom signs petition

Many are of the view that the president will be violating the law and undermining the work of the judiciary if he gave in to the pressure mounting on him to grant the presidential pardon to the three Montie FM contemnors.

But Kwesi Pratt believes arguments that the president would be violating the law if he frees the Montie three are “unfortunate”.

“How would that be a violation of the very same constitution that confers those powers on him?... I don’t see that,” he said.

He explained that Article 72 “is not just by granting total pardon to the convicts.

“Article 72 has four [4] different categories of measure open to the president. The president can forgive them for whatever crimes they have committed and they walk home free with a clean sheet, no conviction records. That is the first one.’

“The president can also reduce the sentences, so that instead of four months, they may serve one week or three months but their conviction will stand. The president has the power to do that. The president can also give them some pardon which enables them to come home under a bond so that when they commit that crime again, they will go back to prison. So there are several options open to the president” he explained.

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