Ernest Kofi Owusu Bempah

A Deputy Director of Communications for the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Ernest Owusu Bempah, says former President John Mahama is a threat to Ghana's Judiciary and democracy.

In Mr. Bempah’s view, Mr. Mahama made a mockery of the Judiciary when he stated that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) is allegedly packing the courts with NPP-inclined judges

In a press statement issued, he called on Ghanaians to stand up and prevent Mr Mahama from jeopardising state institutions.

"When Mahama stood at a forum organised by NDC sympathetic lawyers and called on his partisan falcons to balance the judiciary by taking up opportunities to join the bench, he was actually making a mockery of the bench and to a large extent allowing excessive partisanship to take better part of his politics."

Ernest Owusu Bempah

Mr Bempah added that Mr Mahama's comment means that should he be given the opportunity to lead the country again, he will fill the Judiciary with NDC judges; something he insists will be detrimental to the country.

"Mahama who once served as President and wants another shot at the job is now serving notice to all and sundry that given the opportunity, he will outsource the work of judges to extremist special interest groups like NDC Lawyers."

"Mahama wants to sabotage the state by packing the judiciary with partisan ideologues."

His comments follow some assertions made by the former President last weekend.

Mr Mahama while speaking at the NDC Lawyers Conference in Akosombo over the weekend, accused President Akufo-Addo of appointing members of his party to the bench to influence decisions in their favour.

He thus charged NDC lawyers to prepare themselves to take up positions on the bench to balance out its composition.

“Our lawyers, some of you must be prepared to go onto the bench, I know that some of you have very lucrative legal practices you will not want to leave and go onto the bench. But you can see what the current President has done; he appointed the largest number of judges onto the bench. More than 80 towards hundred and counting.

“He’s packed the court and we know that they’ve packed the court because they want to avoid accountability after they have left office. So, all manner of people who have been known to be partisan, to have been executives of their party who are in the legal profession have been leapfrogged onto the Superior courts and other places,” he said.

But his comments have received some condemnations, with the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) in particular calling him out.

The Public Relations Officer of the GBA, Saviour Kudze, said Mr Mahama’s comment is inappropriate and not backed by evidence.

He said while there’s nothing wrong with Mr Mahama advising a group of lawyers who have identified themselves as NDC lawyers to take up appointments on the bench, running down the same judiciary – an important institution that he seeks to superintend as a President in future - is wrong.

But the NDC’s Director of Legal Affairs, Edudzi Tamakloe, who attended the NDC lawyers’ conference, disagrees with the critics of Mr Mahama.

Speaking on Asempa FM’s Ekosiisen show on Monday, September 4, the private legal practitioner justified why a group of lawyers have chosen to identify as NDC lawyers, saying no law bars them from doing so.

According to him, the NDC has different professional groups under an umbrella, who use their expertise to push the party’s interest and agenda.

He said this third annual meeting of the lawyers, numbering about 150 focused on how best they could help the NDC secure victory in 2024.

“The NDC is not a proscribed criminal organization. Anybody is permitted to associate with it freely. In this country, per our laws, the only organization you cannot associate with freely is a criminal organization.”

The young respected lawyer insisted that Mr. Mahama’s comments were in order.

“This is one of the fairest and most objective comments I have heard. Many times in this country, there is so much hypocrisy and that’s what we worship. We don’t like the truth, and so when you speak the truth too much, you even become a dangerous person in the community. You are seen as dangerous not because you’ve stolen from anyone, but because you have spoken the truth that no one can speak.”

“And if you listened to John Mahama, he added that it is not going to be business as usual. Even in the Bible, God’s word says a false balance is an abomination. What we all need to know is that justice delivery emanates from the people; justice delivery is founded on strong public confidence,” he added.

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.