Attack on Judiciary – Never again

About some 30 years ago, three judges of our Judiciary and a soldier were brutally and viciously done to death in this country.

That single ncident is a scar on our history that should never be repeated. It is against this background that the Indepedendent is concerned that a Chairman of a political party would use the imagery of MANY WAYS TO KILL A CAT in reaction to perceived biased judgements against the ruling party and President Mills’ Government.

In what we consider an unwarrented attack on the judiciary, the Chairman of the NDC, Dr. Kwabena Adjei is reported to have attacked the judiciary for recent judgements that he considers not favourable to his government and therefore called on the Chief Justice to purge the bench of what he termed “corrupt and politically biased members of the judiciary”.

At the same conference where he launched his verbal attack, he said in response to a question that the NDC would take appropriate measures to do the cleansing if the Chief Justice failed to do what the NDC is complaining about; and made his point by saying that there are ‘many ways to kill a cat’.

After the vicious killing of three judges and a soldier in our history, we thought this nation will not reach another stage where anybody, particularly, a political figure with mass following, foot soldiers and cadres would seek to whip up mass disaffection against an important institution like the judiciary.

We are worried like many Ghanaians about the negative impact of such threats. Our democracy is undermined anytime such threats are made either against the press or the judiciary.

A roll call of the judges we have in Ghana today will show that no single government has had the privilege of appointing judges. Governments as they come and go appoint judges.

That such judges may have political preferences is not an issue here. What is an issue is how they conduct themselves and interprete the law.

Governments of the day may, if they had their wish win all cases they prosecute but the story of judgements in our courts is clear.

The NPP in their time lost cases that they thought they should have won just as the NDC is losing some cases.

A loss or win in our courts should not be tied to the political biases of our judges but rather to the soundness and legal correctness of their judgements.

The law like beauty often ‘lies in the eyes of the beholder’. And so lose or win, the legal system has in-built mechanisms or stages for aggrieved parties to seek redress or get their perceived justice.

For this reason, the NDC and its Chairman should know better and not whip mass hysteria that may lead to some cadres taking justice into their hands.

The Chairman of the NDC should have left the matter in the hands of the Attorney General, an able lawyer to live by her pledge to take all necessary steps to ensure that the government and the people it reperesents got the perceived justice that they believe the judge in this case denied them.

Already some media houses close to the regime are coming up with a ridiculous list of judges percieved to belong to the opposition.

That act and the press conference of the chairman of the NDC has some foreboding for Ghana and its image.

We do not want to wake up any day to hear a judge has been “killed the cat way’.

By Kabral Blay-Amihere

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