Auditor-General has been cited for contempt of the High Court in an application filed by lawyer for the Senior Minister and four other public officers.
Mr Daniel Yao Domelevo was cited contempt of court for his refusal to file in court the documents based on which he surcharged Yaw Osafo-Maafo and four other public officers contrary to clear provisions of the applicable law.
The Senior Minister, Yaw Oasfo Maafo , Michael Ayensu, Abraham Kofi Tawiah, Eva Asselbe Mends and Patrick Nomo all of the Finance Ministry filed an appeal at the Registry of the High Court in which they were asking the court to set aside the AG’s decision on disallowance and surcharge against them.
Upon service of the appeal on Mr Yao Domelevo by Yaw Oppong, the lawyer for the defendants, he was required to file the documents on which he based that decision.
This, he was to do in addition to replying to the appeal 14 days after he was served but failed to do so.
A search conducted at the High Court Accra on Jan 14, revealed that the AG was served with the appeal on Dec 13, last year, but refused to comply with the law by not filing the said documents.
By the law, the failure to file such documents 14 days after service of the appeal constitutes a contempt of the High Court.
In compliance with the law, the Senior Minister and the four others have filed an application for contempt to commit the AG Daniel Domelevo to prison or for the imposition of any other punishment.
According to the applicants, “the refusal of the respondent(the Auditor-General ) to file in particular the documents on which he based the purported decision against us, exposes his contrived scheme deliberately fashioned to achieve his own invidious agenda and also with a view to prevent the Honourable Court from efficiently ascertaining the full circumstances of our case and effectually ruling on it in terms of Order 54A Rule(1) and (2) of CI 47 pursuant to amendment by CI 102 .”
They added that, “the refusal of the respondent to file the relevant documents and a reply contrary to the relevant provisions of the law is a confirmation of our conviction that the Respondent in taking the decision against us and the subsequent resort to media propaganda to damnify us, and disparage our hard-earned reputation, he was actuated by malice and lack of good faith and without any legal basis whatsoever”.
They are, therefore, praying the court to agree with them that the conduct of the AG “clearly amounts to a gross contumacious disrespect to the authority and sanctity of the law and therefore ought to be punished in accordance with the law”.
The applicants are also asking the court to make consequential orders including the setting aside of the impugned decision of the Respondent.
Story: Kofi OWUSU TAWIAH