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13.02.2006 General News

Dismiss AG's submissions - Dankwa

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Accra, Feb. 13, GNA - Professor Emmanuel Victor Oware Dankwa, counsel for Tsatsu Tsikata, former Chief Executive of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, on Monday asked an Accra High Court hearing his client's case to dismiss submissions by the Attorney-General(A-G) as they were "frivolous, vexatious and without merit".

Prof Dankwa said he was making this request because the question of jurisdiction came up in the High Court's ruling on Monday, February 6, 2006, and the presiding judge decided to hear the case of his client. For this reason, Counsel told the court that if the A-G and the Chief Justice were not satisfied with the ruling of the High Court, they had every earthly right to appeal against it, and not to ask the Court to stay proceedings.

Prof Dankwa explained that his client's case before the High Court was based on Article 128 (2) of the 1992 Constitution which states: "The Supreme Court shall be duly constituted for its work by not less than Five Supreme Court Judges.

Counsel stated that based on this, the ruling by the Supreme Court on his client's matter before it sometime last year, should be declared null and void, because instead of five judges, only four Supreme Court Judges ruled on the case.

Counsel submitted that in view of this, there was no Supreme Court decision, and for that matter, the question of the High Court being asked by the A-G to set aside the Supreme Court's decision did not arise here.

Prof Dankwa, therefore, prayed the court to allow his client to start with his case.

Replying to Counsel's submissions, Mr Ayikoi Otoo, A-G and Minister of Justice, said the High Court had no jurisdiction to declare as null and void a decision of the Supreme Court being the highest court of the land.

The A-G submitted that the High Court would be "setting a gross jurisdictional error if it allowed Tsatsu to proceed with his case, adding; "it will be a complete waste of the Court's time." Mr Justice Ofori Atta, presiding judge, adjourned proceedings to Wednesday, February 15.