Monday, November 01, 2010

GBA defends judges

Some executives of GBA at the news conference from left to right: Peter Zwennes(National Secretary), Justice Kusi-Minkah Premo (National Vice President) and Mrs. Yaa Gyakobo (Assistant Publicity Officer).

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By William Yaw Owusu

Monday novenber 1, 2010
The Ghana Bar Association (GBA) has frowned on what it calls ‘persistent attacks’ on members of the bench (judges) particularly the Chief Justice Mrs. Georgina T Wood saying “we have resolved not to compromise on any attempt to bring the administration of justice into disrepute.”

They said anybody who has issues with the Chief Justice or any judge should use the appropriate channels to seek redress and would sit down for anybody to remove the Chief Justice or any judge through unconstitutional means.

At news conference in Accra on Friday to highlight on GBA 2010/2011 resolutions passed at the bar conference in Tamale in September, Justice Kusi-Minkah Premo, GBA National Vice President standing in for National President W.K. Beecham said “this association, conscious that its core obligations under its constitution… will without fear, favour or apology, spring to defend or criticize persons or bodies charged with the administration of justice in this country, and will uphold the dignity and respect for law which ensures a law-abiding citizenry and a responsible and fair judiciary.”

He however said just as the bar will protect the judiciary in the fair and lawful exercise of their duties, “it will not condone corruption and misconduct on the bench.”

Mr. Premo said “the bar deplores the attitude of disrespect and discourtesy shown by certain judges and magistrates in the courts, and urges the executives of the bar to bring such misbehaviour to the attention of the Chief Justice for her action, whilst ensuring that the Disciplinary Committee of the bar takes action where members lapse in professionalism.”

He said the GBA has taken notice of a publication in a newspaper called Herald which they said published an article titled “Predict and win judges” saying “we have tasked our Legal Committee to advise us on its legal ramifications and appropriate course of action.”

He said the said publication is in bad taste and has the tendency to expose the judges to public hatred and ridicule.

The GBA added its voice to the call on the Police Administration to ensure that there is even enforcement of the law saying “we note that there is uneven enforcement of the law and that this can lead to lawlessness and thus call on the police and law enforcement agencies to enforce the law fairly and evenly, without fear or favour.”

He said the recent elections at Akwatia and Atiwa have shown that in spite of the excellent work of the Electoral Commission “there is a lot be desired where security at such times is concerned, and thus, while appreciating the work done by the police at these times call on the IGP to work relentlessly to plug the loopholes in security and ensure that future elections, especially that of 2012 are conducted without violence and in a peaceful and orderly manner.”

The GBA advised the public to respect the dignity of the offices being occupied by the President, Speaker of Parliament and the Chief Justice saying “when referring to them, employ words that match our status as a civilized nation that seeks honour and good conduct in all persons, especially our leaders.

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