Four of the judges who showed remorse for their actions are to be paid their entitlements while the other 16 have been sacked without any benefit, the Chief Justice Georgina Wood announced at a press conference Monday night.
The 20 lower court judges were found guilty of “stated misbehaviour” under Article 151 of the country’s constitution , which states: “A person holding a judicial office may be removed from office by the Chief Justice on grounds only of stated misbahviour, incompetence or inability to perform his functions arising from infirmity of body or mind and upon a resolution supported by the votes of not less than two-thirds of all the members of the Judicial Council”
“The Council unanimously decided to remove from office 20 out of the 21 judges and magistrates cited in the petition. Some were removed from office without benefits and others with benefits. The removed with benefits were remorseful when they appeared before the Committee and apologised to the people of Ghana and the judiciary for bringing the name of the institution into disrepute by their conduct,” she stated.
Their dismissal followed the completion of the work of the five member committee chaired by Supreme Court Judge, Justice Sophia Adinyira, which was tasked by the Judicial Council to investigate the allegation made against them by ace investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
Those who will receive their entitlement are Mr Seyram Tsatsu Azuma [Akropong Circuit Court], Mr Paul K. Alhassan [Ashanti Agona District Court], Mr Albert Zoogah [Ashaiman District Court] and Mr Courage Ofori Afriyie [ Offinso District Court]
The 16 judges dismissed without benefits are Mr Benjamin Y. Osei [Juabeng Circuit Court], Ms Florence Otoo Ninepence [Tema Circuit Court], Mr Isaac B. Akwantey[ Wa Circuit Court], Mr Alex Obeng Asante [Tarkwa Circuit Court], Mr. Emmanuel K. Sunu [ Bolga Circuit Court], Mr Baptist Kodwo Filson [Bibiani Circuit Court], Mr Emmanuel Opare [Techiman Circuit Court] and Mr Samuel Ahiabor [Adidome District Court].
The rest are Mr William Baffoe [Cape Coast District Court], Mr Michael Boamah Gyamfi [Mamponteng District Court], Mr Jacob Amponsah [Ejisu District Court], Mr Frank Kingsley Oppong [Kasoa District Court], Mr Samuel Essel Walker [Bolga District Court] and Mr Alfred K.A. Mensah [Somanya District Court].
Meanwhile, Mrs Wood says “further announcements on the other investigative committees will be made soon”.
Anas in September this year released a video documentary on the investigation which showed more than 100 judicial staff including court clerks and 34 judges at the country’s High Courts, District and Magistrate courts taking bribes from litigants to compromise justice delivery in cases before the various courts.
The three-hour edited video, which is the result of a two-year painstaking investigation into the judiciary by the award winning investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, triggered a number of law suit against him, his Tiger Eye PI investigation team and other individuals.
Some of the High Court judges indicted in the corruption quagmire initially filed a motion in a bid to stop the public screening of the video at the Accra International Conference Centre but that failed.
But that was just the beginning of a number of suits to come. Currently, Anas is caught in a legal web with some of the judges, including Justice UP Derry who has filed multiple cases from the High Court to the Supreme Court.
Source:3news.com By Stephen Kwabena Effah]]>