General News of Thursday, 22 March 2018
Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, is convinced that Dominic Ayine, who has filed a suit at the Supreme Court challenging his appointment, is being sponsored by officials of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Martin Amidu, who is a member of the party, said in his response to the suit brought against him that, the NDC officials are seeking to derail efforts being made to root out corruption in the country.
“To the best of my knowledge, information and belief, the Plaintiff [Dominic Ayine] brought this action in his name fronting for the immediate past Government to set at naught the popular wishes of the majority of the Ghanaian electorate who see the President’s acceptance of the nomination of the 2nd Defendant [Martin Amidu] as Special Prosecutor, as being in the national interest to attack the canker of corruption in the body politic,” Martin Amidu indicated in his affidavit verification sighted by Citi News.
“[Dominic Ayine] was also the immediate past Deputy Minister for Justice for less than four years in the immediate past Government that was overwhelmingly defeated in the last elections on 7th December 2016….the legal firm of Lithur Brew and Company now representing the Plaintiff [Dominic Ayine] are also the lawyers for former President, John Dramani Mahama: the immediate past Attorney General, Marrita Opong Brew-Appiah was and is a member of the law firm as well as Tony Lithur who was also appointed by the former President as Chairman of the lucrative Ghana Airport Company Limited during his tenure of office and also holds himself out as the personal lawyer of the former President,” Martin Amidu noted.
‘Amidu too old to serve’
Dr. Diminic Ayine in February 2018 filed a suit at the Supreme Court, contending that Martin Amidu, being 66 years of age, is too old to hold public office as Special Prosecutor based on Articles 190(1)(d), 199(1), 199(4), and 295 of the 1992 Constitution.
In his argument, he said the Office of the Special Prosecutor falls under the broad category of public officers who by the constitution must retire by age 60, or latest by age 65, via an extension.
But Martin Amidu, who has been vetted and approved by Parliament and also sworn-in by President Akufo-Addo, in his response to the suit said Dominic Ayine had failed to “point to a single provision in the Constitution or Act 959 that states that the Special Public Prosecutor’s office shall be a public office and shall retire at the age of 60 years as was the case in Appiah Ofori’s case.”
He explained that Section 13 of Act 959 of the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act is not amendable to the provisions of Article 199 of the 1992 Constitution, which deals with the retiring age of public servants “because the Special Prosecutor and the Deputy Special Prosecutor are not appointed under Chapter 14 of the Constitution.”
The first hearing of the case is yet to be held.