Your petition against Ayine is an attack on free speech-Minority to CJ
The Minority in Parliament has expressed their displeasure at the decision by the Chief Justice His Lordship Anin-Yeboah to drag Dr. Dominic Ayine to the General Legal Council over the latter’s alleged disparaging comments against Supreme Court judges.
Addressing a press conference today, Wednesday, June 8, 2021, Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu accused the Chief Justice of acting on ”hearsay” to drag the former Deputy Attorney General before the Legal Council.
He told journalists that the action by the CJ amounts to an assault on the freedom of expression.
Dr. Dominic Ayine was speaking at a Judicial review dialogue series last month on Presidential Election Petitions and their impact on Africa’s Democracy, organised by the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD Ghana) in collaboration with the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Law Faculty.
Hr opined during the event that the posture of the Supreme Court throughout the Election Petition hearing suggests that it had a “pre-determined agenda” to rule against the petitioner, John Dramani Mahama.
It is based on these remarks that he has been dragged before the GLC.
The CJ wants him to be probed for making disparaging comments against the judges of the apex court.
But the Minority says the invitation originating from the CJ is an affront to democratic and academic freedom.
Haruna Iddrisu further indicated that the Chairman of the General Legal Council, who is also the Chairman of the Judicial Council and head of the Judicial Service, has already determined that the comments are“totally unacceptable”.
He wants the Disciplinary Committee of his Council to investigate it further.
“The Chairman of the General Legal Council who is also the Chairman of the Judicial Council and head of the Judicial Service has already determined that the comments are “totally unacceptable” and wants the Disciplinary Committee of his Council to investigate it further. It is against this backdrop that we, the Minority Caucus in Parliament find this invitation to be in utter bad faith and meant to be an attack on free speech on Parliament, as an institution, and also an affront to democratic and academic freedom. This invitation is also seen to be an attack on freedom of expression and deepens the growing concern about the culture of silence, which is gradually lingering its ugly head in our democratic dispensation.
“Dr. Ayine’s comments be appreciated as a matter within the public interest and the comment seeking to improve our democracy and the functioning of our institutions. Dr. Ayine was speaking as a Member of Parliament, Chairman of the Subsidiary Legislation Committee of Parliament and not only as a Lawyer. He has a duty and responsibility as a Member of Parliament and a Chairman of the Subsidiary Legislation Committee of Parliament to speak to the public on matters of public interest as he did at the forum of the Presidential Election Petition and their impact on African’s democracy,” the statement said.