Former Attorney General and Minister of Justice who was sacked from government for his unwavering anti-corruption stance, has challenged President Mahama’s commitment to the fight against narcotic drugs.
Martin Alimisi Benz Kaiser Amidu believes that the president is not merely paying lip-service to the fight against narcotic drugs, but also doing propaganda with it.
‘President John Mahama as Vice President, and as the President of Ghana, has been unable to stem the menace of drug trafficking within the small territorial boundaries of Ghana,’ he noted in his latest epistle released in the early hours of yesterday.
It was in reaction to President Mahama’s promise that he would use his chairmanship of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to stem the menace of drug trafficking in the sub-region. He gave the assurance when members of the West African Commission on Drugs (WACD) called on him at the Flagstaff House last Wednesday.
But the man whose fight against corruption has earned him the nickname, ‘Citizen Vigilante,’ emphasized, ‘Aside from propaganda as we have come to understand the use of the term by the President, this NDC Government cannot fulfill the basic requirement of social democracy to ensure the egalitarian wellbeing of its citizens by protecting them against the menace of drug trafficking and consumption.’
Reason According to him, ‘The NDC 3 and 4 governments have a penchant not to take drug trafficking and the prosecution of other serious crimes seriously particularly, when the culprits are perceived to be associates of the government.’
‘Instead,’ he indicated, ‘When one is perceived to be an opponent of the government or a sacrificial lamb, exhibitions in the nature of high profile trials are mounted to pull wool over the face of the ordinary Ghanaian.’
Facts On File In one of such instances, the former Attorney General, whose aversion for corruption knows no bound, said ‘One Joe Owoahene Acheampong was arrested, tried and convicted and sentenced for narcotic drug offences by the Regional Tribunal in Accra. While serving his sentence in the Kumasi prison an appeal was made at a high court in Kumasi instead of the Court of Appeal in Accra as mandated by Articles 126 and 137 of the Constitution.
The high court judge purported to assume jurisdiction and ordered the release of the drug trafficking prisoner forthwith.
The drug trafficker was spirited out of the country the same day or night as if by prior arrangement. Somehow, the Government of Ghana, through the office of the Attorney General in Kumasi, supported this unconstitutional procedure in the high court, Kumasi.’
For him, ‘The simple and common sense nature of this case and the fact that the government should not have supported the release of the prisoner on the orders of the Kumasi high court judge is demonstrated by the fact that the whole decision of the Supreme Court delivered on 18 November, 2010 is in one sentence: ‘Application granted since under article 126 and 137 of the Constitution the high court clearly does not have appellate jurisdiction over the regional tribunal.”
According to him, the Supreme Court then made the following order: ‘Let the judgment of the High Court Judge, Kumasi, delivered on 4 June, 2010 in a matter entitled ‘Joe Owuahene Acheampong v. the Republic,’ be brought before this court for the purpose of being quashed and the same is hereby quashed as having been made without jurisdiction. Consequently, the warrant of imprisonment is hereby restored.’
In spite of the order of the Supreme Court, Mr. Amidu said Joe Owoahene Acheampong is still at large with all the powers at the disposal of the government, including Interpol powers whiles ‘The agents of the government in the Attorney General’s office in Kumasi who deliberately perpetrated the illegality are still at post and the Chief State Attorney who was incharge of the Ashanti Region tried to justify the unconstitutional conduct, even after the decision and order of the Supreme Court.’
‘To add insults to injury and concretize the perceptions of the Government’s interest in not arresting and returning the drug trafficker to prison, the Chief State Attorney, William Kpobi, has been rewarded with a transfer to Accra and placed in the Civil Division as the next most senior person to the Solicitor-General’, he observed with trepidation.
His fear is that, the said Chief State Attorney ‘could assume the office of the Solicitor General or act on her behalf in her
The Citizen Vigilante noted with emphasis, ‘This is the smoke screen behind which the John Mahama NDC government promises or makes its propaganda to fight drug trafficking and other serious transnational organized crimes in Ghana and the ECOWAS.’
For him therefore, the fight against narcotic drugs ‘cannot be achieved by propaganda in the nature of promises which are glaringly against the facts and experience even in Ghana, let alone the ECOWAS.
BY Charles Takyi-Boadu
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