The formation of a commission of inquiry to look into recent violence which marred the by-election at Ayawaso West Wuogon has been greeted with intense debate, primary of which is whether or not persons who appeared before the said commission can be liable to criminal prosecution.

This is what the law says in the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana

  1. Where adverse findings have been made against a person

Article 280

(2) Where a commission of inquiry makes an adverse finding against any person, the report of the commission of inquiry shall, for the purposes of this Constitution, be deemed to be the
judgment of the High Court; and accordingly, an appeal shall lie as of right from the finding of the commission to the Court of Appeal.

  1. When a person may not be liable to criminal prosecution even though adverse findings has been made against them.

Article 280

(3) The President shall, subject to clause (4) of this article cause to be published the report of a commission of inquiry together with the White Paper on it within six months after the date of the submission of the report by the commission.

(4) Where the report of a commission of inquiry is not to be published, the President shall issue a statement to that effect giving reasons why the report is not to be published.

  1.  Immunities for witnesses who appear before the commission.

Article 283

A witness before a commission of inquiry is entitled to the same immunities and privileges as if he were a witness before the High Court.