The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has issued a strong warning to Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah that it will continue to defend the cause of freedom and right of the country.
Ghanaians, the party warned, did not strive to put in place the building blocks of a sustainable democracy only to allow judicial tyranny to rear its ugly head and to intimidate NDC lawyers.
“We will never be intimidated by partisan occupants of state institutions no matter the cost. We will not be intimidated”, the party stressed.
General Secretary of the party Johnson Asiedu Nketia stated these at the party’s headquarters Monday when he addressed the media on a petition filed by the Chief Justice to have Dr. Dominic Ayine investigated by the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council.
Dr. Dominic Ayine is accused of making derogatory remarks against the Supreme Court during a panel discussion on Presidential Election Petitions and their impact on Africa’s Democracy organized under the auspices of the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD).
According to Asiedu Nketia, the NDC stands with the former Deputy Attorney-General against what he said is increasingly becoming a campaign of judicial tyranny being waged by the Chief Justice against lawyers who identify with the NDC.
“Indeed, the latest persecution of Dr. Ayine is part of a grand agenda by the current Chief Justice to intimidate, cower and muzzle all dissenting voices, particularly those in the NDC, who dare to speak against some of the strange decisions that characterized the 2020 Presidential Election Petition.”
“Only few months ago, some lawyers with NDC leanings, specifically Lawyer Abraham Amaliba and David Annan, were hauled to the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council by the Chief Justice in similar fashion and harassed for expressing their views on the Constitution of the Supreme Court Panel that heard the 2020 Election Petition.”
“Also, not long ago, the Hon. Rockson-Nelson K. Etse Dafeamekpor, the NDC Member of Parliament for South Dayi, received a similar invitation to appear before the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council.”
Dr. Ayine, he said, spoke at a roundtable discussion with other lawyers and stressed he is entitled to his views about independence of the Judiciary in line with his freedom of expression guaranteed under the 1992 constitution.
“He was courteous to the Court and kept his language temperate and decent. He stayed within the bounds of professionalism. He was neither scurrilous nor scandalous.”
“For him to be accused by the Chief Justice of disparaging Ghana’s Judiciary over these tempered and justified comments, is not only bizarre and unfortunate, but speaks volumes about the Chief Justice,” he said.
Mr. Asiedu Nketiah noted that even as the action against the Bolgatanga East MP is unjustified, it is a symptom of a larger plot.
He argued that it is no coincidence that virtually all the lawyers who have been reported to the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council by Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah are aligned to the NDC.
“What is the Chief Justice’s personal interest in the punishment of NDC affiliated lawyers that he is so keen to initiate unwarranted actions against them,” he quizzed?
He cautioned that the notion of the judicial arm of government being beyond reproach is a fantasy that cannot be sustained and added that respect of the Judiciary is one that ought to be earned.
Respect, he said, cannot be rammed down the throat of anyone through acts of suppression and brazen acts of intimidation.
Mr. Asiedu Nketia warned that if these actions by the Chief Justice are intended to browbeat the NDC and its members and prevent them expressing their views on the performance of the Judiciary, then he will not succeed.