Dr Stephen Opuni

Former Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Cocoa Board (Cocobod), Dr Stephen Opuni, who is standing trial for causing over GHc217 million financial loss to the state has filed a repeat application for stay of proceedings at the Court of Appeal to halt his trial at the High Court.

He had earlier filed the same application before the trial court seeking to put the trial on hold pending the determination of an appeal against an oder by the court for him to open his defence.

The court, presided over by Justice Clemence Honyenuga, a Supreme Court judge sitting as an additional High Court judge had held that the prosecution had made a prima facie case against him and Seidu Agongo, hence they ought to open their defence.

They, however, appealed against the order and subsequently filed for a stay of proceedings pending appeal which was dismissed by the trial court.

His lawyers have now gone to the Court of Appeal where they are seeking the court to stop the proceedings at the High Court.

Justice Honyenuga, has therefore, adjourned the matter to give the Court of Appeal time to deal with the application which is scheduled for June 15.

Meanwhile, lawyer for Dr Opuni has filed an application asking Justice Honyenuga to recuse himself from hearing the case.

His ground is that he fears he may not get fair trial because the judge had stated in open court that he wanted to finish the case quickly so that he can concentrate on his duties at the Supreme Court.

The application is scheduled for June 9, 2021.