The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has responded to comments made by the Minister for Justice and Attorney General (AG), Godfred Yeboah Dame regarding former President John Dramani Mahama’s perception of the judiciary.
Mr Mahama had recently said the image of the country’s judiciary had deteriorated.
Speaking at the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Lawyers’ Conference, on Sunday, 28 August 2022, Mr Mahama said: “So badly has the image of our Judiciary deteriorated that many of our citizenry openly make mockery of our justice system and of our justices. The phrase ‘Go to Court’ is these days met with derisive laughter, instead of hope that one will truly get justice”.
Reacting to Mr Mahama’s claims, the AG had described the former President’s concerns about the judiciary as embarrassing and unjustified.
“It was a great dismay and embarrassment that, I heard a person who has occupied the highest office of state, that is the former President recently launched an unwarranted attack on the integrity of Ghana’s Judiciary. I observe that, this was the latest installment of systematic attack by the former President, albeit unjustified,” Mr Dame said, while addressing lawyers at the Ghana Bar Association Annual Conference in Ho on Monday, 12 September 2022.
According to the AG, the former President’s comments dints the image of the judiciary.
“I am compelled to comment on same in this address because they border on the security of the state and constitute a deliberate pattern of conduct aimed at undermining the independence of the Judiciary, an arm of government whose autonomy is crucial to its proper functioning”.
The AG further described the former President’s conduct as “deplorable.”
“Such conduct is clearly deplorable, coming from one who has occupied the highest office of President and aspires again to that office. At this moment, it is important for all to note that I express this sentiment not because I stand in opposition to former President Mahama as a politician.”
However, responding to Mr Dame in a statement issued on Tuesday, 13 September 2022, by the Legal Affairs Directorate of the NDC, the party said: “Sometimes, Mr. Dame speaks like a typical NPP foot soldier other than a lawyer and for that matter the Attorney-General.”
According to the NDC lawyers, choosing to use such a conference to make such remarks “is rather disrespectful to lawyers and the legal profession to say the least”.
It indicated that: “Mr. Dame’s unjustified outburst is characteristic of the arrogant posturing of his boss, Nana Akufo-Addo and his failing government that is allergic to divergent views and opinions on national issues.”