The Attorney-General of Ghana, Ms Gloria Akuffo has filed a case at the Supreme Court to quash the injunction placed on the swearing-in of John Peter Amewu as the MP for the Hohoe Constituency.
This comes after an interim injunction seeking to restrain the Electoral Commission (EC) from gazetting John Peter Amewu as MP for the Hohoe Constituency was granted by the Ho High Court.
The Ho High Court presided over by Justice George Buadi made the decision after an ex parte application was argued by Tsatsu Tsikata on December 23, 2020.
The legal practitioner insisted that his clients were not given the opportunity to vote in the parliamentary election in the Hohoe constituency.
However, in the suit filed Tuesday, the Attorney-General is challenging the order of the Ho High Court on the basis that the ruling from the court “constituted a patent error” since it did not have the capacity to hear the matter.
“The High Court has no jurisdiction under article 33 of the Constitution to entertain a matter in the nature of a parliamentary election petition and to grant any relief(s) interim, interlocutory or final, available in a parliamentary election commended under article 99 and section 16 of the Representation of the People’s Law, 1992 (PNDC 284)”.
“The proceedings of the court below and the orders emanating therefrom dated 23rd December 2020 were void as same were in violation of article 99 of the Constitution,” the plaintiff noted in the application.
The motion entitled “The Republic versus High Court, Ho, Ex parte, Attorney General (Applicant), Prof. Margaret Kweku, Simon Alan Opoku-Minta, John Kwame Obompeh, Godfred Koku Fofie, Felix Quarshie (Interested Parties)”, among others, is seeking an order of certiorari directed at the High Court, Ho, Volta Region, with Justice George Buadi presiding, to “bring into this Court for the purpose of being quashed the orders of the court dated 23rd December, 2020 in Suit No. E12/40/2021 entitled “In the matter of an application under Article 33 of the Constitution, 1992 and order 67 of the High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2004 (C.I.47) and the Inherent Jurisdiction of the High Court between Professor Margaret Kweku, Simon Alan Opoku-Mintah, John Kwame Obompeh, Godfried Koku Fofie, Felix Quarshie and the Electoral Commission, Wisdom Kofi Akpakli, John Peter Amewu and The Attorney-
Additionally, the Attorney General is also seeking an order prohibiting the High Court, Ho, Volta Region from further hearing or conducting proceedings in the said case.
It is the contention of the Attorney General that the orders of the Ho High Court dated 23rd December, 2020, constituted a “patent error on the face of the record to the extent that they purported to confer on the applicants (interested parties herein), non-existent voting rights in respect of the Hohoe Constituency in the Volta Region.”
Argument of the Attorney General
According to the Statement of Case filed by the Attorney General on behalf of the Member of Parliament-elect for the Hohoe Constituency, the facts of the case make it abundantly clear that the pursuit of the action filed by the interested parties at the High Court, Ho, is an attempt to enforce a non-existent right.
“The interested parties have already been told by this Honoruable Court that, to the extent that C. I. 95 places their traditional areas of Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe and Lolobi in the Hohoe Constituency, same is unconstitutional. CI 95 ought to be amended in order to place the said traditional areas in the Oti Region.
It added that the aforementioned places ceased to be part of the Hohoe Constituency in Volta Region immediately the Oti Region was created and were put thereunder.
“The alleged failure of the Electoral Commission to amend CI 95 to give effect to the boundaries of the new regions, does not mean that the interested parties together with the residents of the 4 areas, can continue to assert voting rights in the Hohoe Constituency.
“To do so will be inconsistent with Article 47(2) which prohibits a constituency from straddling two regions, and will create further constitutional chaos,” the Statement of Case noted.
“It is thus beyond doubt that the action at the High Court, Ho, is a palpable abuse of the process. The wrongful assumption of jurisdiction by Justice Buadi, was a serious error apparent on the face of the record.
“This court ought to exercise its supervisory jurisdiction to prevent a situation where the interested parties will, through the backdoor, surreptitiously seek to assert the right to vote in a manner which is constitutionally frowned upon.
“The interested parties’ case is borne out of mischief and an attempt to judicially sanction an unconstitutionality. It is merely a vile attempt to upset the hard won electoral victory of the winner of the parliamentary election in Hohoe Constituency through an unjustified invocation of the court’s human rights jurisdiction,” the Attorney General further stated in her argument.