Supreme Court to rule on AG’s review application against Opuni ruling

The Supreme Court will on October 26, 2021, rule on an application filed by the Attorney General seeking a review of its decision to prohibit Justice Clemence Honyenuga, from further hearing the trial of Dr. Stephen Opuni, and two others.

Mr Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Attorney General, argued that the decision of the ordinary Bench contained multiple fundamental flaws which occasioned substantial miscarriage of justice.

He said the ruling would cause irreparable damage to the republic in the substantive trial if the errors committed by the ordinary Bench were not corrected.

Mr. Dame further argued that if there was any error that was occasioned by the exclusion of some exhibits by the trial judge, such an error did not warrant the invocation of the supervising role of the Supreme Court.

Samuel Codjoe, Counsel for Dr. Opuni opposed the application, arguing that it did not meet the threshold for invoking the review jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.

He said the AG was repeating its old argument, indicating that the Court was right in prohibiting the trial judge and prayed it to uphold the majority decision.

The seven-member review panel presided over by Justice Jones Dotse and assisted by Justices Gabriel Pwamang, Agnes Dordzi, Avril Lovelace-Johnson, Amadu Tanko, Prof. Nii Ashie Kotey and Gertrude Tokornoo adjourned the matter to October 16 for Ruling.

A panel of five had on July 28, ruled in a 3-2 majority, that Justice Clemence Honyenuga, a Justice of the Supreme Court be prohibited from hearing the case.

This was after the apex court had upheld Dr Opuni’s argument of bias against him by the trial judge and wanted him removed as well as quashed portions of the ruling on his submission of no case.

Dissatisfied by that decision, the AG per his review motion stated that, the apex court’s 3:2 majority decision that prohibited Justice Honyenuga, from continuing with the case of the Republic versus Opuni, Seidu Agongo, and Agri cult Ghana Limited, contained fundamental errors that occasioned a miscarriage of justice, and therefore ought to be reviewed.

Contained in the AG’s statement of case filed on August 18, 2021, during the legal vacation, AG invited the panel “to make a deep introspection into the soundness of the decision of the Court dated July 28, 2021, and correct the errors contained therein.”

“The Court ought to be guided by the simple question whether the impugned decision, on account of the multiple legal flaws, leads to a miscarriage of justice in the case pending at the High Court, ” the AG’s statement of Case read in parts.

The AG concludes his statement of case by noting that, “it is our humble submission that a careful application of relevant principles regarding the invocation of both the supervisory and review jurisdictions of the Court will undoubtedly result in a setting aside of the decision complained of. To preserve the same will be a bad and dangerous precedent for Ghana law”.

Source: GNA

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