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IGP Heads For Jail?   
 
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20-Sep-2011  
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Paul Tawia Quaye, IGP
 
 
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The Inspector General of Police (IGP), who is the head of the Ghana Police Service, could find himself in jail very soon if he does not take steps to purge himself of...

...a contempt application brought against him by 24 police officers who were arbitrarily dismissed from the service.

On April 13, 2007, the police administration announced the dismissal of 24 policemen after a Police Enquiry established that they misconducted themselves by allowing the media to cover the bad accommodation problems facing them at the Police Barrack Depot in Accra.

The affected policemen, who were not given a fair hearing at the Police Enquiry sitting, challenged the decision to dismiss them and won the case but the police administration has blatantly refused to re-instate them as directed by the High Court leading to the filing of contempt proceedings against the IGP.

It all started when 30 policemen were brought before the Police Service Enquiry Board on charges of misconduct in 2007 but each of them denied the allegation.

According to the policemen, even though they were questioned, they were not allowed to tell their side of the story or cross-examine the witnesses who testified at the enquiry and later all they heard was that only six had been cleared and the rest (24 policemen) given dismissal letters to take effect from May 1, 2007.

Their counsel, J.K. Yeboah filed an order of mandamus at the High Court, presided over by Justice N.M.C Abodakpi on June 24, 2009 to compel the IGP to “furnish the applicants with the proceeding that culminated in their discharge within 30 days after the service of this order.”

It took several months for the police administration to comply with the court’s order and when they finally did the lawyer realized his clients had been unfairly dismissed per the proceedings.

He therefore filed a notice for judicial review in the nature of certiorari under order 55 Rule1 of C.I. 47/2004 asking the court to compel the police administration to re-instate the dismissed policemen.

The respondent (IGP) was served with the processes but his counsel failed to attend court when the application was moved before Justice Edward Amoako Asante.

The court then quashed the decision by the police administration to dismiss the applicants by ordering their immediate re-instatement and also awarded cost of GH¢1,000. 00 for each applicant against the respondent.

The police was also ordered to pay all entitlements due the applicants including salaries and allowances from the date of their unlawful dismissal.

However, since October 25, 2010 when the court gave the order, the police administration has refused to comply with the court’s order.

When the contempt application was to be moved, the IGP’s (contemnor) counsel came to court to argue that the application ought not to have made the IGP the respondent but rather the applicants should have directed their action against the Attorney General, who advises government on legal matters.

The argument was however rebutted by counsel for the applicant who argued that the motion for contempt was mounted under Order 55 in the processes for judicial review and not the human rights charter in the constitution where the AG was to have been joined in the action.

The court, presided over by Justice Dennis Adjei, upheld counsel’s submission, saying the applicants have the right to cite the IGP for contempt.

The case resumes after the 2011/2012 legal vacation.
 
 
Source: Daily Guide/Ghana
 
 

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