Ruling on applications against Indian businessman, March 8

The Supreme Court has fixed March 8 to deliver its verdict in two applications filed by the state against Indian Businessman Ashok Kumar Sivaram.

The state is inviting the court to quash the orders of the High court that ordered the Comptroller of the Ghana Immigration Service to restore an Indian Businessman’s residence and work permits as well as an order of mandamus by the same court.

The five member panel of the Court presided over by Justice Julius Ansah gave the date for the rulings after it had listened to submissions of the state and Sivaram’s lawyer.

Ms Jasmine Armah, a Senior State Attorney, who represented the state, told the court that the trial judge erred in law on the face of the records when it ordered the GIS Comptroller to restore the Sivarams’s residence and work permit.

According to Ms Armah, the court also breached the rules of natural justice by not allowing them to tender a video which was crucial evidence in the matter.

“The trial Judge committed an error in procedure when she gave two orders at the same time and on same date. It is serious irregularity which the Supreme Court should not entertain.”

Ms Armah said the trial judge also usurped the authority of an executive power by directing the GIS to restore the businessman’s residence and work permit and prayed the court to quash the two rulings of the High Court.

Mr Gary Namiko Marfo who represented the Indian businessman opposed to the state’s applications and told the court that he was relying on his statement of case and supplementary affidavit.

Mr Marfo held that the trial judge did not err in her ruling in respect of the order of Mandamus.

According to Mr Marfo the GIS could revoke his client’s residence and work permit on the grounds of fraudulent representation.

He said per the powers of GIS, the service’s Act, the Comptroller‘s powers were based on discretion which ought to be fair, candid and reasonable. 

“The revocation of Ashok’s deportation order on June 1, 2017 may not be a constitutional injunction by the GIS.’’

According to him his client had been in the country for the past 17 years and he is a director and a Shareholder in a telecommunication firm.

On September 18, last year, a High Court in Accra ordered GIS to restore the Residence and Work Permit of Mr. Ashok Kumar Sivaram, the Indian businessman within seven days.

Granting an order of Mandamus filed by Mr Sivaram against the Service, the Court also ordered the GIS’s assigns, agents and servants to desist from harassing him until his application before the Service was duly processed.

On June 1, last year, the GIS following an order by the Interior Ministry, deported Mr Sivaram on the premise that he had forged his marriage certificate in an application for citizenship.

The Indian businessman, therefore, contested his deportation by seeking judicial review.

Mr Justice Kweku Ackah-Boafo, presiding at the High Court upheld the businessman’s application and quashed his deportation order on July 31, last year, on the grounds that the Interior Ministry exceeded its jurisdiction.

Source: GNA

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