September 9, 2013

The Minority in Parliament have asked the Supreme Court justices currently on vacation in the US, following their adjudication on the landmark election petition, to return home immediately.

Speaking to DAILY GUIDE on telephone last Friday, the Minority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said it would be proper for the judges who had flown outside the country on holidays to return home at this time to listen to the various comments their judgments had prompted among Ghanaians.

The floodgates were open for Ghanaians to openly express their opinions on the judgments, now available both in hard and soft copies and posted on the internet, when Tsatsu Tsikata, NDC lawyer, singled out Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah for attack.

The recent unsavoury remarks by counsel for the NDC in the now ended petition hearing, Mr. Tsikata, about Justice Anin Yeboah, appeared to have broken the ice, providing impetus for varied reactions to the judgments of the individual justices on the nine-member panel.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said, “Ghanaians now appreciate the importance of why the US mission cautioned their compatriots ahead of the Supreme Court ruling following the many requests by judges for visas to travel to their country.”

He said, “Let them come home and listen to the critiques of their judgments.”

A few days before the verdict of the Supreme Court was delivered, a US Embassy alert to their compatriots in the country prompted apprehension among Ghanaians about a possible security breach. It took an intervention of the government officials and even the mission to calm the nerves of an already scared population about what could be chaotic fallouts of the Supreme Court verdict on the petition.

Turning to the closing words of the President of the nine-member panel, Justice William Atuguba, which directed that copies of their judgments were lodged with the Registry and how this never was, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said, “When the President of the Panel said that their various judgments were ready and lodged with the court Registry and that was not the case, he was not truthful to Ghanaians.”

Until the judgments were eventually ready, petitioners or their assigns in particular made futile daily visits to the Supreme Court registry in search of the individual documentary positions of the judges.

Speculations were rife about how some of the judges wrote and emailed their judgments from their vacation resorts in the US.

The Minority leader said the Panel President wrote and emailed his judgment from the US; something which for him was another ground of a seeming untruthfulness to Ghanaians.

It is a little over a week now since the ruling in the landmark petition hearing was delivered following months of appearances at the Supreme Court.

When the ruling was delivered, petitioners were disappointed upon their discovery that the judgments were after all not in the custody of the Registrar as announced by the Panel President.

Speculations are rife in the media that some of the judges, especially the Panel President, flew to the US for holidays, prompting all manner of theories among curious Ghanaians.

Observers with retentive memories recalled rather humorously how Mr. Justice William Atuguba chastised politicians who had readied their travel documents should there be trouble in the country. Interestingly, they claimed he left before his compatriot politicians.

Judges are currently on their annual legal vacation which is due to end in October having commenced in August.

Daily Guide