News24

Ghana president to meet I Coast leader

2012-09-05 13:27

Accra - Ghana's President John Dramani Mahama will on Wednesday head to neighbouring Ivory Coast, which is seeking the extradition of ex-Ivorian leader Laurent Gbagbo's spokesperson, who was arrested in Accra last month.

A statement said the president's trip, which also includes a stop in Burkina Faso, was to thank regional leaders for their support following the July death of Mahama's predecessor, John Atta Mills.

Mahama will on "September 5, 2012 visit neighbouring countries, Cote D'Ivoire and Burkina Faso, to thank the heads of state and people of the two countries for their support during the funeral of the late president", the statement said.

The Ghanaian leader will also visit Benin, Nigeria and Togo this week, the statement said.

Gbagbo's spokesperson, Justin Kone Katinan, was arrested in Ghana on 24 August under an Ivory Coast warrant for alleged economic crimes as budget minister during the crisis that followed Gbagbo's refusal to cede power to rival Alassane Ouattara in December 2010.

Ivory Coast is seeking Katinan's extradition, but Katinan has refugee status in Ghana and it is not yet clear if Accra will send him to answer charges in an Ivorian court.

A hearing was to be held over the arrest on Wednesday in Ghana's high court.

Katinan was among thousands of Gbagbo loyalists who fled to Ghana after the fall of his regime following the post-election conflict in which about 3 000 people were killed.