Truly as the saying goes, “the poor is the only person the law turns on”. If this isn’t true then we don’t know what to believe anymore in Ghana. Sometimes we sit back and WE, (PANI) want to believe that the courts of Ghana or the Attorney General (AG) have been threaten to do what they do these days or have been bribed to do them. Obnoxious of all, is when the Supreme Court (SC) gets itself entangled in such mischief.
Has the SC lost its powers? Is the AG no longer interested in bringing to book people who wrong the entire citizens of the country? Has the law been reduced to “these are my friends/untouchable/wealthy/powerful/others so let them go free”? Does the law now only work on some individuals? Has the law now become a protocol tool to help some people to criminally enrich themselves, and walk through broken glass or traps and yet, not get hurt or trapped?
PANI as a group, we respect all decision by the courts of the land but we still have the rights to criticize all verdicts and seek for review if we have any problems with them. The Patriotic Action For National Interest (PANI) our outburst is just because of some dubious, deceptive decisions, we believe have been given by the SC concerning Waterville, ISOFOTON and Alfred Agbesi Woyome. We are also displeased with the reluctance of the AG to also help matters here.
Firstly, if our SC and AG weren’t weak or dubious, then how could an international company by name ISOFOTON after dubiously through the high court defraud Ghana of such a huge amount, also refuse to pay it back after the SC had determined they had no claim to the money in the first place. They had the confidence to say they won’t pay a dime and true to their words, they haven’t paid a dime up till now, even though they accepted the verdict and said they won’t seek a review.
Seriously, if our SC and AG weren’t dubious or weak, could ISOFOTON have said this, meant it and as a result not pay anything since 2012 when they were ordered to refund the money?
The sad part is, nothing has also been done to them. Is this weakness on the part of the SC and AG or a ploy by these two institutions to help ISOFOTON go scope free?
Secondly, as we all know from numerous cases that, people are mostly given very harsh punishments for very little offences like stealing or defrauding people of some not very expensive items or some little sums of money. We give them punishments far harsher than what Woyome and ISOFOTON received for this big harm they have done to Ghana.
1. A man was jailed five year for stealing 3 bunches of plantain: Man, 50, jailed for stealing three bunches of plantain. Have a look at it! http://nowghana.com/man-50-jailed-stealing-three-bunches-plantain/
2. Two men were jailed for 20years each for stealing generators: Two men jailed 40 years for stealing from church. Have a look at this also! http://www.ghanavoice.com/2015/01/two-men-jailed-40-years-for-stealing-from-church/
3. Two men were sentenced to 15 and 25 years each for defrauding a company: Bank Manager Jailed for GH¢4m. Have a look at this! http://www.dailyguideghana.com/bank-manager-jailed-for-gh%C2%A24m-fraud/
4. A man was jailed 4 years for defrauding his girlfriend of GH₵ 7,700: Man Jailed 4yrs For Defrauding Girlfriend. Have a look at it! http://www.ghanaiantimes.com.gh/man-jailed-4yrs-for-defrauding-girlfriend/
The examples above make it a shocking thought, why an individual who has defrauded Ghanaians to the tune of GH₵ 51million should be asked only to pay the said amount, without interest payments or payments for punitive damages. This raises a question; on what basis should Woyome refund the money, if indeed he is not a criminal?
To add insult to the injury, the SC also gave an open verdict; we mean a verdict without any conditions attached to even force a quick refund by Woyome. The verdict felt as if they didn’t even want him to pay the money back to the state.
Panians find it grim also, as to why the AG seems not be concerned about how the country would retrieve its money from Woyome and ISOFOTON, and not concerned enough about the open nature of the verdict which doesn’t force Woyome to pay in time. As it stands now he has till infinity to refund the money.
It is even more shocking considering the speed and eagerness the AG’s department showed in paying Woyome and ISOFOTON all their monies when the high court ruled in Woyome and ISOFOTON’s favour initially. What we see now is unwillingness, now that the arrow has turned against the two.
Panians, see this as not normal but fishy and dubious, especially, considering a case where the AG requested and pushed very hard for a minimum of three years instead of a year and a half, plus a refund of money that was given to a bishop, for defrauding a woman of an amount of £120,000. It then seriously questioned the court on why it didn’t give a time limit to when the bishop should refund the money he took from the woman.
And so, we ask these questions, is Woyome more human than the bishop or the woman more important than all Ghanaians combined or is £120,000.00 bigger than GH₵ 51.2million? Is ISOFOTON and Woyome more important than the people the law worked on harsher, even though their offences were lesser than that of Woyome and ISOFOTON?
An ex-judge friend told us this after we questioned him on the verdict that was given by the SC: The AG or any individual can/could have sought for a review of the decision after the SC gave that open verdict, as the AG did with the Bishop Kanco case. We then asked him this;
Sir, couldn’t the SC have given us a straight forward condition attached verdict like they normally do so as to have avoided all these back and forth, and given that would have saved the country some resources?
And his answer was, yes. Sometimes we want to believe the SC mischievously gave that open verdict so that it can prolong the case forever so that Woyome never refunds the money or save him sometime before he refunds the money.
In short, we believe both the SC and the AG haven’t done well for Ghanaians based on their verdict and decisions they took on these judgment debt cases with the ISOFOTON and Woyome. We, therefore, suggest both the SC and AG are pushed harder to do the right thing for our country Ghana, especially, the Woyome, ISOFOTON cases which need urgent attention now.
GOD BLESS OUR HOMELAND GHANA!!!
Nana Kwame Kobri
Chairman of Pani
Nana Kwadwo Akwaa 0246-913-905 / 0209-676-413
Nana Kwame Nketia 0540-607-752
Archibald Owusu Ansah 0266-656-716
Mubashir Iddrisu 0266-037-757
Marfo Boateng 0244-408-227
Nana Kwame Kobri 0244-087-20