The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Wednesday, 4th April, 2018, at the Banquet Hall of Jubilee House, swore into office 5 new Court of Appeals Judges, in fulfilment of Article 144(3) of the Constitution.
The five Justices, three men and two women, who were sworn into office by President Akufo-Addo, upon the advice of the Judicial Council, were described by the President as being “eminently fit and qualified for the position of Justices of the Court of Appeal, and have the independence of mind and impartiality of spirit to hold this high office.”
They are Justice Nicholas Charles Abbey Agbevor, Justice Alex Berchie Poku-Acheampong, Justice Anthony Kwadwo Yeboah, Justice Merley Afua Wood, and Justice Amma Abuakwaa Gaisie.
Describing the Judiciary as one of the most important arms of Government responsible for the preservation and longevity of the 4th Republic, the President noted that the 1992 Constitution affirms that final judicial power in the State is vested solely in the Judiciary, and not in any other agency or organ of the State, be it the Presidency or the Parliament.
“It has, thus, onerous responsibilities to protect the individual liberties and fundamental human rights of citizens, to act as the arbiter in disputes between the State and the citizen, to act as the arbiter in disputes between citizens, and to serve as the bulwark for the promotion of the orderly development of our nation, and for the defence of the liberties and rights of our people,” he said.
To the new Justices of the Appeals Court, the President urged them to bear in mind that the growth of Ghana demands that we have a Judiciary that commands the respect of the people by the nature of its delivery of justice, as well as by the comportment of its judges.
“It is vitally important that we have judges who are honest, possess integrity and a sound knowledge of the law.Application of the laws of the land must occur, in the words of the judicial oath, without fear or favour, affection or ill-will, and, therefore, without recourse to the political, religious or ethnic affiliations of any citizen of the land,” the President said.
He continued, “When you fall foul of the law, we expect that they must be dealt with accordingly, and the law enforcement agencies, including you at the Appeals Court, must ensure this is done. We cannot have development, which will bring jobs to our youth, without order.”
President Akufo-Addo indicated further that the strict application of the laws of the land would help restore confidence of the Ghanaian people in the Judiciary, following the recent, dramatic exposé of corruption in the Judiciary by one of the nation’s leading investigative journalists.
“With the Special Prosecutor having been sworn into office, to ensure accountability of public officials, past and present, who engage in acts of corruption and financial malfeasance, it is my expectation that you help facilitate the work of this Office,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo reiterated the commitment of his government to build a new Ghanaian civilisation, where the rule of law is not a slogan, but an operating principle for the development of our State, where the separation of powers is real and meaningful, where public officials behave with honesty and integrity, where the liberties and rights of our people are fully protected, and where law and order provide a firm basis for our social and economic development.