Mother of Prof. Benneh’s "killer” suspects her son was poisoned in police custody

Late James Nana Womba Late James Nana Womba

The mother of James Nana Womba, prime suspect in the murder of Professor Emmanuel Yaw Benneh, has expressed shock over the death of her son in Police custody.

She suspects that her son was killed with food laced with poison saying "I was told that somebody gave him fried rice. I think the fried rice might have been contaminated. My son might have been killed through food or some people were after his life."

Madam Talata Nona told journalists that the last time she saw her son (Womba) was last week Monday and nothing showed that he was sick.

According to Madam Nona, she only gave him (Womba) money and engaged him in a chat before saying good bye, which was to be a parting.

Madam Nona, who is currently jobless, said her son had denied knowledge of the murder on countless occasions, assuring her that things would be well.

James Nana Womba, was described as the main suspect who allegedly confessed involvement in the killing of UG law lecturer, Prof. Benneh, died at the police hospital in Accra last Saturday.

Police sources say the 26-year old was rushed to the intensive care unit of the police hospital.

He was put on oxygen but died shortly. The police say he had been ill for some time.

The cause of death is yet to be made known.

But Womba's mother said although her son allegedly died last Saturday (October 17), she was only informed today (Monday October 19,) by four armed men from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) at about 10:00am.

She said the Police asked her she should be present tomorrow to witness the post mortem that would be conducted on her son.

"I was only informed by my son's girlfriend (One Veronica) that Womba was unwell. I was told that somebody gave him fried rice. I think the fried rice might have been contaminated. My son might have been killed through food or some people were after his life."

The mother of two said she would consult her lawyer to know the next line of action. "I don't know what to do now," Madam Nona said.

She said Womba was the bread winner, noting that he did driving, plumbing, and electrical works with remarkable ease.

"Womba has worked with the late Prof. Benneh for over one and half years and due to his hard work, the Prof. agreed to work with him after Womba's Mistress whom he was working with travelled"

Womba has been described by the Police as the prime suspect in the death of Prof. Benneh.

The Police say Womba masterminded the death of the Law lecturer with three others. So far, two persons including Opambour Agya Badu Nkansah are in the custody of the Police.

Womba, last week Wednesday, appeared before the Kaneshie District Court looking healthy. However his accomplice Nkansah was unwell and he was taken to the hospital.

Womba and Nkansah have been charged with conspiracy and murder.

Prosecution had informed the Court that, the Police are on the heels of the two other suspects.

Prof. Benneh was killed at his residence in cold blood at Adjiriganor in September this year.

Meanwhile, A private legal practitioner, Christian Lebrechet Malm-Hesse, has noted that the prosecution will have a tough time to successfully prosecute the case of the alleged murder.

Mr Malm-Hesse told Stephen Anti on Midday Live on TV3 Monday, October 19 that the police will now have to rely on circumstantial evidence to conduct the case.

This, he explained, is difficult because the evidence that will need to be gathered under a circumstantial approach may have been tampered with, a situation that create difficulties for the state.

"The prosecution has big legal hurdle to climb," he said.

The suspect is reported to have died at the Police Hospital in Accra on Monday, October 19

"This is not a good one for the prosecution team. He is the one who mentioned names leading to arrests of others

"The police will now have to depend on circumstantial evidence and that is going to be a little bit hurdle for the prosecution."

Source: The Herald