SC To Hear Gitmo 2 Case Feb 8

The Supreme Court has fixed February 8 to commence hearing into the case in which the government was being challenged for allegedly bringing into the country two former Guantanamo bay detainees, without recourse to the laws of the land.

This was after the court had struck out issues three and four which boarded on the sovereignty of the United States.

Those issues, according to the court were resolved in chambers. It noted the US government was not being tried rather the decision of government of Ghana to accept the two Gitmos was being quizzed.

The decision by the Supreme Court to strike out issues three and four came after the Attorney General’s representative, Mr Sylvester Williams, prayed the court to withdraw issues three and four.

It therefore gave defendants seven days to file any response if they so desired.

The Supreme Court had earlier ordered the government of Ghana to release its agreement with the United States government regarding the acceptance of two Guantanamo Bay detainees into the country.

According to the court the release of the documents was to be made available only to lawyers in the case since that could not have resulted in any security threat.

The AG however held that documents in the agreement were confidential and any disclosure to the public or open court would violate section 1 of the State Secrets ACT, 1962 (Act 101).

Margaret Bamful and Henry Nana Boakye last year sued the Attorney General and Minister of Justice as well as the Minister of Interior, accusing government of illegally bringing in the two former Gitmo detainees, without recourse to the laws of the land.

The two plaintiffs were therefore seeking a true and proper interpretation of Article 75 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the President of the Republic of Ghana acted unconstitutionally by agreeing to the transfer of Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al-Dhuby.

Two Guantanamo bay detainees, Atef and Al-Dhuby had been in detention for 14 years by the United States after being linked with the terrorist group Al-Qaeda.