Monday, September 06, 2010
CJ fires back – I won’t resign
Posted on: www.dailyguideghana.com
By William Yaw Owusu
Saturday September 4, 2010
The Chief Justice, Mrs. Georgina Wood has finally broken her silence by hitting back at her critics who are asking her to resign from her position challenging anyone who believes she has violated any laws of the country to set the necessary constitutional provisions in motion for the appropriate sanctions to be taken against her.
A press release issued in Accra and signed on behalf of the Judicial Secretary by Mrs. Grace Tagoe, Director of Communications of the Judicial Service said “in view of recent remarks within the media and persistent calls by some strange voices in the country for the Chief Justice to resign, it has become pertinent for her to react to these unfounded allegations and also clear the air once and for all.”
“Anyone who believes she has intentionally violated any laws of this land has a constitutional right to set the necessary constitutional provisions in motion for the appropriate sanctions to be taken against her.”
The release said a group calling itself GOEVAC-PFG held a press conference on September 2, 2010, at which they called on the CJ to resign on the grounds that “she displayed some level of incompetence and misuse of her office during the 2008 presidential run-off.”
The release said the decision to react to the calls for the Chief Justice’s resignation was meant to “correct the rather negative impression about the Chief Justice and to allay fears of all peace-loving Ghanaians as well as people who genuinely hope to ensure that the tenets of our Constitution and democracy are safeguarded.”
It said the issue of whether or not the CJ has power to invite a court to sit on a public or statutory holiday has been explained elsewhere, but “since the group’s press conference and unsavoury remarks about the Honourable CJ were given very wide media coverage, it is crucial that the office of the CJ sets the facts straight to enlighten the Ghanaian Public on the role the CJ played in the entire matter.”
The release catalogued a list of public statements made by the Chief Justice since her appointment giving credence to the fact that she was committed to promoting the rule of law, ensuring efficient administration of justice for Ghana’s democratic dispensation to be enhanced.
For instance, on July 17, 2008, the CJ delivered a speech at the formal launch of the Peace and Development Concert, at the British Council in Accra, where she was even made the official Peace Ambassador. She made a pledge to lead the judiciary to contribute to promoting peace and good governance by declaring that “I appreciate the sobering fact that an important safeguard of election integrity lies in an effective resolution of complaints and appeals with minimum delay.
It said a memorable speech delivered at the launch of the Election Manual on November 11, 2008, the CJ had said “as much as no one is happy about losing a case in court, it was clear that in most times, disputants and their lawyers carry exaggerated opinions about the likely success of their cases in court, pushing the blame on everybody else, particularly the judge, when things do not work out as expected, and feeding clients and the unsuspecting general public with false information, about the conduct of the judge, and as to why they lost.”
The CJ had said “this does not augur well for the administration of justice in our country. It undermines public trust and confidence in the judiciary, the institution which undeniably is the ultimate channel for addressing conflict.”
The release added “the Hon. CJ spoke as a prophet, considering the turn of events now!”
Anyone who believes she has intentionally violated any laws of this land has a constitutional right to set the necessary constitutional provisions in motion for the appropriate sanctions to be taken against her.