- Manasseh Azuri Awuni has expressed surprise over some of the judgements emanating from the courts
- He said some of the judgements insult the judiciary more than harsh criticism from the public
- His remarks follow a recent ruling by the Accra High Court against the Media Foundation for West Africa
Our manifesto: This is what YEN.com.gh believes in
Investigative journalist and editor-in-chief of The Fourth Estate, Manasseh Azure Awuni, has stated that some judgements by judges demean the judiciary.
“Chief Justice, some judgments insult the integrity of the judiciary more than Dominic Ayine's words. Take note, sir,” the investigative journo said in a Facebook post sighted by YEN.com.gh.
Azuri’s comments come on the back of the Human Rights Division of the Accra High Court’s judgement on a case filed by the Media Foundation for West Africa (MWFA) against the National Communications Authority (NCA).
The court upheld the legal submissions of the NCA and dismissed all the reliefs claimed by MFWA against NCA in respect of the former’s request for information.
MFWA made a request to the NCA to provide the full list of all authorised FM stations as of the second quarter of 2020.
The NCA assessed the request and asked MFWA to pay a fee of GHS2,000.00 in accordance with the law. MFWA refused to pay the said service fees and filed an action at the High Court of Accra against the NCA.
But the High Court held that the request made by MFWA was personal to the NGO and that the said requests must be paid for by MFWA.
The court ordered MFWA to pay GHS1,500.00 to the NCA before the permitted information requested can be answered.
Azuri’s post sparked massive reactions and YEN.com.gh compiled a few.
Poku Adusei said: “Even Apaloo's court will not save you. A claim of public interest in the request was unsupported whatsoever. Even if it had, you were in the wrong forum. The law is not talk talk.”
Brian Oppong Yaw said: “This is law. No emotions attached.”
Atua Alex stated: “The chief Justice led the way for them in the election petition and can’t be bothered if same bad decisions like his is made.”
Louis Bening added: “Law by itself defies logic. Logic cannot be a replacement for the truth. There are many innocent people in the prisons because logic had been used to interpret the law and went against them.
Judgement is good when it favours one and bad when it goes against another. Depending on which side you find yourself, you have the right to criticise. I hate law and logic. When we as a people accept the fact that law and logic cannot build a good society, then we can find ways of drawing closer to God and depending only on him…”
Kwame Aboagye Stoner said: “A typical example is the 2020 election petition. The judgement was a total insult to the integrity of the judiciary.
He should give us a break-even Kennedy Agyapong is freely roaming around.”
Chief Justice petitions Legal Council
The Chief Justice, Justice Kwasi Annin-Yeboah last month petitioned the GLC to investigate Dr. Ayine, who is a former Deputy Attorney General and the current Member of Parliament for Bolgatanta East.
The petition followed some comments Dr. Ayine made during a CDD-Ghana roundtable discussion themed: ‘Presidential Election Petitions and their Impact on Africa’s Democracy’.
Questioning independence of the judiciary
Dr. Ayine reportedly questioned the independence of the judges who sat on the 2020 election petition case.
Former President John Dramani Mahama, the NDC presidential candidate in the 2020 general elections petitioned the Supreme Court after rejecting the outcome of the presidential polls.
He argued that the results as declared by the chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensa, were flawed and unconstitutional.
John Mahama asked the Court to set aside the declaration which had President Akufo-Addo as the winner of the election and order a rerun between the two of them.
Chief Justice’s petition against Dominic Ayine part of efforts to enforce culture of silence - NDC secretary
The court, however, dismissed the petition for lacking “cogent evidence” to back the petitioner's claims.
But, addressing the roundtable, Dr. Ayine accused the court of “constantly putting hurdles” in the way of Mahama “in terms of adducing evidence” to prove his case.
He added that the Supreme Court didn’t faithfully apply the rules of procedure during the trial.