Member of Parliament for Madina, Francis-Xavier Sosu has expressed distaste about how his assertion regarding the judiciary has been received by the Ghana Bar Association (GBA).
Mr Sosu described the GBA’s reservation as among other things, misplaced in its scheme of objectives adding that the association has become “rather a monumental failure to our democracy.”
“It is a wonder to know that the Ghana Bar Association still exists in this country following your loud silence on critical matters of national concern which relate to the Bar, Legal Education, Mistreatment of Lawyers, lack of welfare for Lawyers, Human Rights abuses, Press freedom and justice delivery among others in Ghana,” he said.
In an earlier statement, the GBA referred to the MP’s remarks at last Friday’s ‘Yentua’ Demonstration as ‘ignorant’ and ‘irresponsible’, with the possibility of courting disaffection for the judges and exposing them to danger.
At the protest, Mr Sosu used the opportunity to caution judges to desist from being biased and political in the discharge of their duties.
The GBA found the assertion by the MP “unprofessional, unfortunate, irresponsible and distasteful and same smacks of deep-seated ignorance, as the tenure of judges per the Constitution, 1992, and other relevant laws is never in any way whatsoever tied to the tenure of the political regime under which judges are appointed.”
But in a response on February 14, the Madina legislator insisted that he stands by his statement.
“The statement was a conditional statement and no amount of twists and turns will extricate judicial officers and judges who will allow themselves to become agents of political agenda,” he said in a statement.
According to him, the GBA is creating a false impression about his statement by their press release suggesting that “judges would lose their jobs when the party that appointed them loses power.”
“My statement was clear ‘If you are a political judge, you will be dealt with politically… Judges owe a duty to the Constitution of the Republic of Ghana and the laws of Ghana. If a judge allows him or herself to become an agent of a Political party, the tenure of the said judge will run with the political parties they favour’.
He also blamed the GBA of political bias at the help which he insists is affecting its core duties.
“Unfortunately, the leadership’s Release shows the extent to which they are politically affiliated and bias as Leaders of the Bar Association. Who in Ghana does not know that the GBA Leadership are so politically biased?. What are the core duties of the GBA?”
In the strongly-worded statement, the human rights lawyer opined that the reaction forms part of machinations to cite him for professional misconduct.
“Again, I have noted the lame attempt by the GBA Leadership to prepare a ground to construe my statements as a Professional Misconduct Contrary to Rule 52 of L. 12423. My statement as a whole did not violate Rule 52 and can never be said to be irresponsible and unethical. Since when did speaking TRUTH to power become unethical and irresponsibility?” he further quizzed.
The MP urged legal professionals to support his call “to stop our judges from becoming political judges in order to guarantee our democracy.”
“The leadership of the GBA is needlessly attacking the voice of conscience that speaks truth though it hurts badly.”
He also challenged the Association to channel its energies towards regaining its ‘lost focus and relevance’.
“Let me remind the GBA Leadership that it has a duty to ensure “the maintenance of the Independence of the Judiciary.” How can you achieve this object if judges allow themselves to be influenced politically? For the rest of the objects, I beg to leave it here else we wash our dirty linen in public,” he said.