Article 72 needs no amendment – Yaw Oppong argues

A private legal practitioner, Yaw Oppong, says calls for the amendment and scrapping of Article 72 of Ghana’s constitution is baseless and sees it as a very essential power.
The President on Monday remitted the sentence of the Montie trio, a month into their four months jail term, as per Article 72 of the 1992 Constitution.
The three – Salifu Maase, Alistair Nekson and Godwin Ako Gunn – had threatened to kill judges of the Supreme Court during a political talk show on an Accra-based radio station, Montie FM.
They were of the view that the Court was biased in a ruling that ordered the Electoral Commission to delete names of National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) card registrants from the voter’s register.
The three men together with Directors of the radio station all pleaded guilty and were sentenced.
A petition was presented to the President by members of the NDC after their sentencing, calling the sentence harsh.
But speaking on 3FM’s Sunrise morning show, lawyer Oppong said he doesn’t think there is any need to take a second look at Article 72 but stressed that it all depends on the person in whom the powers are vested.
“In my view, I don’t think there is any need then otherwise we may be taking off a lot of the functions of the executive and maybe the commander-in-chief.
“A lot depends on the person in whom these powers are given to because there is a duty on you not to abuse something constitutionally.”
He questioned if it was in line with the constitution to show compassion to those whom it is due, “for the purpose and rather not for the that you the President and you should show compassion to those whom it is due”.
“There are many people in prison who have spent about 30 years and reformed and there are many people like women who are in prison and have left their children sometimes without a father and don’t these children also need access to their mother.
“That is the worry otherwise I would say that there is no need to amend or remove this particular article because it is a very essential powers counselling the President and it should be there a lot depends on who exercises that power”.
By Nana Afrane Asante||Ghana
Twitter: @3Newsgh

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