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Oct 6, 2015

Chief Justice suspends seven High Court Judges for misconduct


Seven of the 12 implicated High Court judges in the corruption scandal following an exposure by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas have been suspended, on grounds of stated misconduct.

The justices include Justices Francis K. Opoku, Kofi Essel Mensah, John Ajet Nasam, Ernest Obimpeh, Kwame Ohene Essel, Ivy Heward-Mills and Gilbert Ayisi Addo.

A release signed by the Judicial Secretary, Justice Alex Poku-Acheampong and issued to the Ghana News Agency on Tuesday, in Accra, said their suspension follows the establishment of a prima facie case of stated misbehaviour against them by the Hon. Lady Chief Justice pursuant to Article 146(3) of the 1992 Constitution and the setting up of a committee under Article 146(4) to investigate a petition.

It said the justices were suspended with immediate effect on the advice of the Judicial Council and was given approval by the Vice President, Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, acting in his capacity as President of the Republic of Ghana.

According to the statement, the Chief Justice had decided to suspend the determination of a prima facie case in respect of Justice Mustapha Habib Logoh and Justice Paul Uuter Dery, who were cited in the petition as a result of the actions instituted by them against her and Tigereyepi, which are pending in court.

It also noted that the proceedings against Justice Charles Quist have been deferred on grounds of ill health following a medical report submitted by his physician on the grounds of his state of health.

“Meanwhile Tigereyepi has written to the Chief Justice informing her that the inclusion of Justice Daniel Obeng, a Justice of the High Court, in the petition for the removal from office was an error.”

It said according to Tigereyepi, further investigations indicate that the judge they dealt with was rather Emmanuel Opare, a Circuit Court judge.

It added that, “our records at the Judicial Service have confirmed that at the time the investigations were conducted by Tigereyepi, in August 2015, Justice Daniel Obeng had been elevated to the High Court and transferred to the Northern Region.

A total of 34 judges are being investigated following the three-hour documentary by Anas revealing how they took bribes to throw away cases before them.

Twelve lower court judges are also on suspension in connection with the case. – GNA