Members of the Bar and Bench in a pose with leadership of PIWC
MEMBERS OF the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) and Bench in the Brong-Ahafo Region defied the early Sunday morning downpour to join congregants at the Pentecost International Worship Centre (PIWC), Sunyani, in a thanksgiving service to mark the 32 nd commemoration of the Martyr’s Day Celebration.
On July 1, 1982, Justice Fred Poku Sarkodee, Justice Cecilia Afran Koranteng-Addow and Justice Kwadwo Agyei Agyepong, all judges of the High Court and Major Sam Acquah, a retired Army Officer, were abducted and gruesomely murdered by some military officers during the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) military regime.
The bodies of the murdered judges were doused with petrol and set on fire.
However, by divine intervention, rain showers that night quenched the burning bodies which were later discovered in a decomposing state.
The Brong-Ahafo Regional President of the GBA, Lawyer Eric Ansah Ankomah, indicated that the Bar and Bench had for the past 32 years, mourned the death of these martyrs of the rule of law.
He said though they had forgiven the killers for their evil deeds, members of the legal fraternity would still remember these martyrs of the rule of law and continue to celebrate them.
‘The Bar and Bench acknowledge and proclaim those good qualities and deeds for which they were murdered,’ he said.
Touching on some of the major challenges facing the Judiciary in recent times in the delivery of justice, Mr. Ankomah called on the Executive to, as a matter of urgency, release funds for the Judiciary to function and avoid a looming situation, as some of the courts in the country, particularly the Courts of Appeal in Kumasi, Cape Coast, Tamale and Koforidua have so far been closed down following the non-payment of judges’ allowances and other remunerations.
‘The Judiciary is virtually starved for lack of funds to carry on with the administration of justice; court houses have not been maintained and are falling into ruins. Government subventions have not been paid on time thereby virtually grinding the administration of justice to a halt,’ he opined.
The PIWC Resident Pastor, Rev Emmanuel Ayisi Mensah and the 3 Garrison Resident Pastor of the Church of Pentecost, Rev Cornelius Edem Lotsu, led the congregation to pray fervently for the Judiciary, the government, the Bar and all those in position of authority for divine grace and wisdom to always defend the truth at all times, even at the peril of their lives, so as to turn the fortunes of the nation around.
Present at the service were some judges including the Supervising High Court Judge of the Brong-Ahafo Region, Justice Beresford Acquah, past and present executives of the GBA and other members of the GBA.
FROM Fred Tettey Alarti-Amoako, Sunyani
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