Mahama’s belligerence and attacks on the judiciary ought to stop now – Owusu-Bempah

A Deputy Director of Communications for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Ernest Owusu-Bempah has asked former President John Dramani Mahama to sop his verbal attacks on Ghana’s judiciary.

Owusu-Bempah said Mr Mahama’s attacks on the judiciary is perhaps the most flagrant display of how little respect he has for Ghana’s democracy.

Mr Mahama recently said the brand image of Ghana’s judiciary especially the Supreme Court, has been badly damaged.

In his view, the judiciary is lately subjected to public mockery because the people no longer feel they can get justice.

Mr Mahama whose election petition was unanimously dismissed by the highest court of the land after the 2020 general elections intimated that the time has come for the judiciary to undergo self-cleansing but, he added, the current Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah cannot lead that process.

He said these while opening the 2nd Annual Lawyers Conference of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Sunday August 28.

“Recently, 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 if he went to the court.

“If people are not poking fun about politics and inducement being used to sway the hand  of justice in the Lower Courts then it is poking fun and making statements about the 7:0  of the the unanimous FC, verdicts which mostly involve cases of a political nature in our Supreme court, this is an unfortunate but serious development.

“One of the scariest existential threats to any democracy is when citizens think their judiciary holds no value for them or no use to them, this is the security threat that the National Security apparatus tried to draw the attention of the nation to recently but was poorly received by the President and his party.”

Mr Mahama’s comments attracted criticisms from the Attorney General, Godfred Dame.

Mr Dame noted that the former president’s lamentations were “deplorable and unjustified”.

“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,” the AG told a gathering of lawyers at a Bar Conference in the Volta Region capital, Ho.

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In a statement responding to Mr Mahama’;s comments, Mr Owusu-Bempah who is also the Corporate Affairs Director at the Ghana National Gas Company Limited said “Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah was right. Indeed, Godfred Dame was absolutely brilliant in describing Mahama’s unsavory attacks on the judiciary at the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) Annual Conference in Ho as dents on the image of the judiciary in the sight of unsuspecting Ghanaians.

“We are all aware of Mahama’s antics in recent times but his latest attack at the opening of the 2nd Annual Lawyers Conference of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Sunday August 28, 2022, is perhaps the most flagrant display of how little respect he has for Ghana’s democracy.

“As a matter of fact, John Mahama has displayed a troub­ling pattern of attack­ing Supreme Court justices and the courts for rulings he disagrees with — a pattern that began during the 2020 pres­id­en­tial election petition, and has contin­ued into his opposition activism.

“He has made a series of tweets and public state­ments attack­ing judges person­ally, ques­tion­ing the author­ity of the courts, suggest­ing the court is biased, and suggest­ing that the judges and court system would be to blame for future electoral violence.

“While Mahama’s actions represent a new level of brazenness, they continue a long line of examples of his attempts to turn the judiciary into political puppets, thereby delegitimizing the institution.”

Below is his full statement…

Mahama’s belligerence and attacks on the judiciary ought to stop now.

Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah was right. Indeed, Godfred Dame was absolutely brilliant in describing Mahama’s unsavory attacks on the judiciary at the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) Annual Conference in Ho as dents on the image of the judiciary in the sight of unsuspecting Ghanaians.

We are all aware of Mahama’s antics in recent times but his latest attack at the opening of the 2nd Annual Lawyers Conference of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Sunday August 28, 2022, is perhaps the most flagrant display of how little respect he has for Ghana’s democracy.

READ ALSO: It’s Mahama or no one else – NDC A/R youth

In Mahama’s own words, it will take a new Chief Justice to lead the process to repair what he said was the “badly dented image” of Ghana’s judiciary for people to win the trust in the system.
For him, the deteriorated image of the judiciary easily sparks laughter from the citizenry when one decides to go to the court for justice.

Holy cow! The same judiciary that Mr Mahama presided over a few years back is totally lacking in integrity today?

Isn’t this a clear ques­tion­ing of the consti­tu­tional author­ity of the judi­ciary?

As with his actions in regard to the judiciary, this rhetoric attempting to delegitimize the courts as biased and political represents an escalation of a pattern.

As a matter of fact, John Mahama has displayed a troub­ling pattern of attack­ing Supreme Court justices and the courts for rulings he disagrees with — a pattern that began during the 2020 pres­id­en­tial election petition, and has contin­ued into his opposition activism.

He has made a series of tweets and public state­ments attack­ing judges person­ally, ques­tion­ing the author­ity of the courts, suggest­ing the court is biased, and suggest­ing that the judges and court system would be to blame for future electoral violence.

While Mahama’s actions represent a new level of brazenness, they continue a long line of examples of his attempts to turn the judiciary into political puppets, thereby delegitimizing the institution.

This threatens our entire system of govern­ment. The courts are bulwarks of our Consti­tu­tion and laws, and they depend on the public to respect their judg­ments and on offi­cials to obey and enforce their decisions. Fear of personal attacks, public back­lash, or enforce­ment fail­ures should not color judi­cial decision-making, and political leaders have a respons­ib­il­ity to respect courts and judi­cial decisions.

Again, conflicts between the courts and the political branches are common and, to some degree, expected. But this questionable behavior and efforts to undermine the justice system must not be tolerated by right thinking Ghanaians. It is all an attempts to wield political influence.

Truth is, Mahama is still bruised over his disastrous outing in 2020. It’s been some 21 months after the last elections, and the loser keeps yelling and telling bizarre election fraud story that has already been debunked both in court and in the public space.

Yes, Mr Mahama has been on and on about this for the umpteenth time. So, one would think that his party elders and advisors would step in and instruct him to shush, but no one seems to care.

It’s astonishing that after repeated claims of Electoral malfeasance and the worst performances at the Supreme Court, former President Mahama is still not learning lessons from his mistakes. This same Mahama took everyone on a wild goose chase at the Supreme Court and he continue to deflect blame in any direction he can throw it without reflecting on his own failures. His stories are literally so outrageous and demonstrably false that you have to be willfully blind to keep going along.

While the NPP after the 2012 elections, proceeded to court with substantial evidence to back its claims of infractions which included over-voting, voting without verification, etc, the NDC on the otherhand, in 2020 went to court with practically zero evidence to back its claims of electoral fraud. The Supreme Court couldn’t have given a verdict in Mahama’s favour without evidence. His petition was subsequently thrown out, and Mahama simply don’t get it. He has since being on rampage at every turn, disparaging the Supreme Court.

It is truly beyond comprehension that the NDC is so poorly led that Mahama is able to get away with such loose talks and disrespect for our institutions of democracy.

Mahama may be oblivious of this but it might interest him to know that, we don’t have “Rawlings judges or Kufuor judges, Mills judges or Akufo-Addo judges. What we have is an extraordin­ary group of dedic­ated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appear­ing before them.

What Mahama utterly fail to grasp is that the judiciary is not a place for fishing expedition that justice will always be done even if heaven falls.

Let Mahama get it that, if you are always carping incessantly about everything, you lose even more relevance than if you had focused on the real key issues.

Signed:
Ernest Kofi Owusu Deputy Director of Communications, NPP

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Asare Solomon Aristocrat
Asare Solomon Aristocrat

I’m Solomon, the CEO of Voix Of Ghana Media ( VOG MEDIA, and Aristocrat Charity Foundation ( ACF). Aside blogging, I am also a Forester, Philanthropist, a Publicist, and a Promoter.

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