Appointments of justices of the Supreme Court and also the Chief Justice must be the sole duty of the Judicial Council subject to the approval of two thirds of Members of Parliament, a senior policy analyst, Mr Kwasi Senyo Hosi, has said.
In his view, this way of appointing the justices and the Chief Justice will deal with the concerns of political interference in these kinds of appointments.
Currently, the Chief Justice is appointed by the President of Ghana acting in consultation with the Council of State and with the approval of the country’s Parliament.
The other Supreme Court Justices are appointed by the President acting on the advice of the Judicial Council and in consultation with the Council of State.
Speaking at the 2022 Constitution Day Public Lecture on the topic: “Avoiding the impending Death of the 1992 Constitution” which was organized by the University of Professional Studies , Accra (UPSA) law school on Friday January 14, he indicated that no judge will need to catch the eye of a president before he can be nominated to the apex court of the land.
Tabling a number of amendments that need to be done to the 1992 constitution, he said “With the legislature we need to expunge any requirement for the executive to appoint any member of the legislature.
“There should be no option at all, as a minister or member of board and enterprises or agencies of the state. You can’t be a player and a referee at the same time, stay in your lane.
“The next one we have to work on is the judiciary. To entrench the independence of the judiciary from the executive, the authority to appoint members of the Judicial Council from the lower court must remain the preserve of the Judicial Council. We should be required to adopt an open and public evaluation process.
“The nomination to Supreme Court and for the Chief Justice should equally emanate from the Judicial Council but subject to the approval of two thirds of members in Parliament, they have to agree and own the confidence in our supreme court judges.
“This will disinsentivise political activism, a situation that is eroding confidence in the judiciary and the very core values – freedom and justice – we don’t need judges to want to catch the eyes of any president any more. That also requires that we have a revision to the constitution of the judicial council itself.
“We need to create rooms for the opposition to also have nominations on this council, it is a centre of of our democracy.”