• Politics

    Justice Atuguba’s Words On Supreme Court Judgement Too Wild - Tema MCE

    The Tema Metropolitan Chief Executive, Hon. Yohane Amarh Ashitey, has described as “too wild” recent pronouncements made by a former Justice of the Supreme Court, William Atuguba, on the adjudication of the citizenship case of MP for Assin North, James Gyakye Quayson.

    In a social media commentary, the MCE who is also the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP)’s parliamentary candidate for Tema East said Justice Atuguba’s description of the court’s action as “scandalous” is far-fetched.

    “Of all commentators, the last person you would expect to make such disparaging comments about the Supreme Court is a former senior officer of the court,” Hon. Amarh Ashitey wrote, adding, “especially one that could have been chief justice.”

    According to him, “yes Justice Atuguba, like anyone else has a right to disagree with the judgement of any court but to describe the court’s action as scandalous, is too wild”

    The comment comes in the wake Justice Atuguba’s lecture on democracy at a forum organized by civil society organisation, Solidare in collaboration with the Department of Political Science of the University of Ghana.

    Commenting on the Supreme Court’s annulment of the election of Gyakye Quayson as MP on grounds that he had not renounced his Canadian citizenship at the time he filed to contest for the seat, Justice Atuguba described the court’s decision to entertain the suit as scandalous and alien to the 1992 constitution.

    According to him, Article 99 of the 1992 Constitution had preserved post parliamentary election matters for the High Court to determine, with appellate provisions available at the Court of Appeal. Consequently, he said, the Supreme Court had no legal basis to entertain the action.

    Justice Atuguba said, in taking on the case, the Supreme Court had exercised concurrent jurisdiction over parliamentary election petition with the High Court, which is alien to the 1992 Constitution.

    According to him, since parliamentary elections were held in over 200 constituencies, the 1992 Constitution could not have envisaged that post parliamentary election matters should be adjudicated by a centralised court such as the Supreme Court.

    However, commenting on the comment by Justice Atuguba, the Tema MCE pointed out that the decision by the Supreme Court to accept jurisdiction had been made by not just one judge but a unanimous panel of several justices.

    “The point is that even if Justice Atuguba were on the panel that had adjudicated that case there was nothing his opinion could have done to change the position of the apex court because he would be in the minority,” the hardworking MCE wrote.

    This being the case, Hon. Amarh Ashitey said that the revered jurist should have expressed his disagreement but done so with utmost respect and consideration for his own brethren at the apex court,

    “At the end of the day, the old truism holds fast, which is that justice lies in the bosom of the judge.”

    Meanwhile, Hon. Yohane Amarh Ashitey has commiserated with the victims of the flooding due to the spillage of the Akosombo Dam.

    He has also praised president Akufo-Addo and the government for the quick response.

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