Deputy Attorney General Godfred Yeboah Dame has urged the Supreme Court to dismiss an application for injunction seeking to restrain Johnson Akuamoah Asiedu from acting as Auditor General.
This is in a case filed by CDD Fellow in Public Law and Justice Prof. Stephen Asare.
The Office of the President on July 4 extended the leave period of the Auditor-General, Daniel Domelevo from 123 days to 167 effective July 1, 2020.
This came in the wake of concerns raised by Mr Domelovo over the directive to take his accumulated leave because his actions, according to him, had caused some embarrassment to the government.
A letter by Mr Domelevo dated July 3, 2020, outlined a series of reasons why he believed the directive left much to be desired, adding what he described as “bad faith on the part of the Presidency.”
Prof Asare’s case
Prof. Asare is one of the key legal analysts who called out the move by the Presidency as being unconstitutional.
He argued that the office of the Auditor-General is a very important position that should not be toyed with.
He maintained that an employee’s annual leave is by nature voluntary. He explained it is a right earned by an employee and should not be used by the appointing authority to be deployed as a sanction to exercise disciplinary control.
AG’s Office calls for round 1
Even before the case is determined, Prof. Asare has filed for an injunction seeking to restrain Mr Akuamoah Asiedu from performing the functions of Auditor General.
Documents filed by the court indicates that Mr Dame will on Wednesday be arguing that should the court grant the request, the work of the office will be greatly affected.
He says the request personalizes the performance of the functions of the office.
He further argued that, this flies in the face of article 297 (h) and (j) of the constitution.
This portion of the constitution reads
“(h) words directing or empowering a public officer to do any act or thing, or otherwise applying to him by the designation of his office, include his successors in office and all his deputies and all other assistants;”
“(j) where a power is conferred or a duty is imposed on the holder of an office as such, the power may be exercised and the duty shall be performed by the person for the time being charged with the performance of the functions of that office.”
Mr Asiedu is also said to have in times past performed functions of the Auditor General in his absence.
Mr Dame will further be praying the court to strike out the office of the Auditor-General and Mr Asiedu as defendants in the case.
Mr Dame holds the view that there is no constitutional basis for the two to be asked to defend the matter.