NDC Demands Immediate Reversal Of Unconstitutional Appointment Request By Chief Justice


Opposition National Democratic Congress says it is completely shocked and scandalized by the extent to which Chief Justice(CJ) Gertrude Araba Esaba Torkonoo was prepared to consciously side-step due process and even breach the Constitution just to please President Akufo-Addo and aid him execute his unholy agenda to pack the Supreme Court.

The party said It is for good reason that Article 144(2) of the 1992 Constitution enjoins the President to make such appointments to the Supreme Court on the advice of the Judicial Council, in consultation with the Council of State, and subject to parliamentary approval.

The NDC said it has sighted a shocking and deeply disturbing letter from Chief Justice Gertrude Torkonoo to President Akufo-Addo, requesting the appointment of five new judges to the Supreme Court of Ghana.

Speaking at a news conference in Accra, Fifi Fiavi Kwetey, the General Secretary of NDC, said the request from the Chief Justice is not only a blatant violation of Ghana’s Constitution but also a flagrant disregard for the established customs and traditions that guide the nomination of judges to the nation’s highest court.

The General Secretary of NDC said, “The names of the five judges put forward by the Chief Justice in her unconstitutional, unsolicited, and self-serving request to the President include Her Ladyship Justice
Angelina Mensah Homiah, His Lordship Justice Eric Kyei Baffour, His Lordship Justice Edward Amoako Asante, Her Ladyship Justice Cyra Pamela C. A Koranteng and Her Ladyship Justice Afia Asare Botwe, the judge currently presiding over the persecution of Hon. Minority Leader, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson. It is instructive to note that this brazen, unsolicited request from the Chief Justice, dated 30th May 2024, was promptly received by President Akufo-Addo on 4th June 2024.

Subsequent to that, the Attorney-General, who is also the chief persecutor of the Minority Leader in the court of Justice Afia Asare Botwe, brazenly followed with another letter dated 21st June 2024, expressing support for the Chief Justice’s unsolicited and unconstitutional request.”

Fifi Kwetey revealed that President Akufo-Addo has already packed the Supreme Court with an unprecedented 15 appointments. He was appalled that the outgoing President was conspiring with Chief Justice Gertrude Araba Esaba Torkonoo to add five more judges to
Ghana’s highest court.

He said, “This isn’t just a political maneuver of an already existing failed President; it’s an assault on our democracy, a betrayal of public trust, and a direct threat to the integrity of our judicial system.

We are calling on all Ghanaians to rise up against this tyranny. We must protect our democracy, our judiciary, and our future.

The actions of President Akufo-Addo and his cohorts are not just political games; they are existential threats to the very fabric of our nation.

It is time to stand up, speak out, and demand justice.” The NDC per the news conference urgently demands the following actions: President Akufo-Addo immediately stopped any plans to appoint additional judges to the Supreme Court.

It said any future appointments to the Supreme Court must strictly follow the constitutional process, including consultation with the Judicial Council.

The party calls for full disclosure of the criteria and process used for the selection of these judges. This is essential to ensure transparency and accountability.

The party said the clandestine and backdoor dealings to appoint loyalists are a disgrace, noting that this hidden agenda fuels public distrust and fosters a culture of corruption that undermines the integrity of Ghana’s judiciary.

It called on the Chief Justice to uphold the independence of the judiciary by resisting any pressure from the executive to influence judicial appointments.

NDC indicated that the judiciary is the last bastion of justice, and its independence is sacrosanct, saying compromising this independence, the NPP is not just bending the law; they are breaking the backbone of Ghana’s democracy.

The Chief Justice has also been called upon by NDC to retract the unconstitutional request to appoint additional judges and ensure future actions align with legal and ethical standards.

It’s said this brazen overreach into the judicial realm is an unforgivable breach of trust, stating that It’s time to reverse these illegal actions and restore faith in Ghana’s judicial system.

On Public and Civil Society Engagement, the NDC said the government must engage with civil society, legal professionals, and the public to discuss and review the process of judicial appointments to restore trust and ensure fairness.

The voice of the people, according to the party, must be heard, indicating that the current administration’s attempts to silence dissent and operate in the shadows are a direct threat to Ghana’s democratic principles.

With regards to Merit-Based Appointments, the NDC said future judicial appointments must be based on merit, experience, and integrity, rather than political affiliations or loyalties.

The party said, “This is not just about filling seats; it’s about ensuring justice for all Ghanaians. The NPP’s nepotism and cronyism are creating a judiciary that serves only their interests, not those of the people.

On the protection of judicial officers, it stated that safeguards must be established to protect judges from political influence and retribution, ensuring they can perform their duties without fear of repercussions.

The party said the country’s judges must be free to uphold the law without fearing for their careers or lives, stating that the NPP’s tactics of intimidation and coercion must be stopped to preserve the sanctity of Ghana’s judiciary.

The General Secretary of the NDC said “Our beloved nation stands at a precipice. Our democracy, painstakingly built by the sacrifices of our forefathers, is under a grave threat from those who have sworn to uphold it.

The blatant, unconstitutional actions of President Akufo-Addo and Chief Justice Gertrude Torkonoo are not just political maneuvers.

They are a direct assault on our judicial independence and the very soul of our democracy. Imagine a Ghana where the judiciary becomes a mere extension of a failed executive, a tool for political retribution rather than justice. This is not the Ghana we pledged to uphold; this is not the Ghana we want to pass down to our children.

We cannot, and we must not remain silent. Our silence will only embolden those who seek to undermine our democratic institutions.

We must rise with one voice, loud and clear, to defend our judiciary, to protect our democracy, and to preserve the integrity of our nation.

Let every Ghanaian, young and old, men and women, from every corner of our land, stand up against this travesty and brazen attempt to hijack our judiciary. Civil society, the clergy, and all democracy-loving citizens must join hands in this fight.

This is not just about political affiliations; this is about the future of our nation. Let us show the world that Ghanaians will not stand for tyranny, corruption, and the erosion of our democratic values.

Let us fight with every breath to ensure that justice prevails that our institutions remain independent, and that our democracy remains strong.

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For the sake of our children, for the sake of our future, let us unite and demand accountability. Let us rise and reclaim our nation from the grips of those who seek to destroy it. This is our Ghana. This is our democracy. And we will defend it with every fiber of our being.

This reckless action is not just a political maneuver; it is an outrageous assault on our democracy and a betrayal of the public trust. Imagine the anger and disbelief as we watch our judiciary being transformed into a puppet of the executive, eroding the very checks and balances that protect our freedom.

This blatant disregard for established procedures is not only unconstitutional but also morally reprehensible.
It’s a slap in the face to every Ghanaian who believes in the rule of law and the sanctity of our democratic institutions.”


Source: Adovor Nutifafa

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