The Ghana Bar Association and three other top members of the bar have filed a suit at the Supreme Court insisting that the appointment of Justices Yaw Apau and Gabriel Pwamang to the Court did not follow due process.
The other plaintiffs in the case are Nene Amegatcher, President of the Ghana Bar Association (GBA); Justin Amenuvor, National Secretary of GBA; and Frank Beecham, the immediate past president of the Association.
The defendants in the suit are the Attorney General (AG) and the Judicial Council as first and second defendants respectively.
The plaintiffs are accusing President Mahama of disregarding the advice of the Judicial Council and failing to complying with Constitutional provisions pertaining to the appointment justices of the Supreme Court. Three names were recommended for the appointment to the Court but two were appointed, a legal practitioner, Yaw Oppong explained the position of the plaintiffs to Joy News.
Though Mr. Oppong did not mention names of justices who were left out of the president’s appointment, he said out of the seven persons recommended for the Appeals Court, only two were appointed by the President.
The plaintiffs are praying for four reliefs:
1. A declaration that upon true and proper construction of Article 114 clauses (2) and (3) of the 1992 Constitution, all appointments made by the President of the Republic of Ghana to the Superior Courts are valid only to the extent that such appointments are made in strict accordance with the advice of the 2nd defendant herein, the Judicial Council.
2. A declaration that upon true and proper interpretation of Article 144 (2) and (3) of the 1992 Constitution, a constitutional trust is created in the 2nd defendant herein, the Judicial Council, to make nominations of the person(s) best qualified to serve as Justices of the Superior Courts of Judicature and the 2nd Defendant is required to ensure that such nominations are actually submitted by the President to Parliament for approval after due consultations with the Council of State
3. A declaration that accordingly, upon true and proper construction of the Article 144 clauses (2) and (3) of the 1992 Constitution the Judicial Council of the Republic of Ghana has a constitutional obligation to specifically advise the President of the Republic of Ghana as to which specific person(s) is/are suitable for appointment to serve as Justice(s) of the Superior Courts of Judicature in accordance with which advice the President is mandatorily required to exercise his powers of appointment.
4. A declaration that an appointment or non-appointment by the President of the Republic of Ghana of a Justice of the Superior Court in a manner out of accord with the advice of the Judicial Council is unconstitutional, null, void and of no effect.
But the government has laughed off the reliefs being sought by the plaintiffs.
Communications Minister Dr. Omane Boamah told Joy News the “president has not breached any aspect of the constitution of Ghana”.
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