Twenty (20) out of the 21 lower court judges indicted in the recent judicial corruption scandal, exposed by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas, have been removed from office.
Some of the judges were removed with their end of service benefits intact, but others were not given.
“Council has deliberated on the findings and recommendations of the committee and taken the appropriate decisions in respect of each of the circuit court judges or district court magistrates in accordance with Article 151 of the constitution.”According to the Judicial Council, only four out of the 21 judges were paid their end of service benefits.
“Those removed with benefits were remorseful when they appeared before the committee and apologised profusely to the people of Ghana and the judiciary for bringing the name of the institution into disrepute by their conduct,” the council said.
The five member committee, chaired by Justice Sophia Adiyira, that investigated the matter, submitted its work to the Judicial Council today [Monday] upon which the decision to suspend them was taken.
Some 22 lower court judges and 12 High Court judges were captured in Anas’ two-year investigative piece, allegedly taking bribes to influence justice.
But one of them was left off the hook, since according to the Judicial Council he was mistakenly added to the list. This brought the number to 21.
The Chief Justice after setting up separate committees to investigate the judges as well as over 100 judicial service staff who were also captured on the tape, suspended the high court judges on the orders of the President after a prima facie case was established against them.
Already, some of the High Court judges have been battling their suspension in court claiming the investigative journalist acted illegally in the processes he used in securing the video, and that the content of it could not be used against them.
In a press conference to announce the recommendations of the five-member disciplinary committee that investigated the eight Circuit Court and thirteen District Magistrates, the Judicial Secretary, Justice Alex B. Poku Acheampong, thanked the committee members for a good job done.
He also assured the general public that “the Judicial Council is determined to take prompt, resolute and necessary measures to ensure the integrity of the judiciary and the Judicial Service.”
The council further stated that “further announcement on the other investigative committees will be made soon.”
Below is the full list of lower court judges removed with and without benefits
His Honour Benjamin Y. Osei – Circuit Court, Juaben
Her Honour Florence Otoo Ninepence – Circuit Court, Tema
His Honour Isaac B. Akwantey – Circuit Court , Wa
His Honour Alex Obeng Asante – Circuit Court, Tarkwa
His Honour Emmanuel K. Sunu – Circuit Court, Bolgatanga
His Honour Baptist Kwadwo Filson – Circuit Court, Bibiani
His Honour Emmanuel Opare – Circuit Court , Techiman
His Worship Samuel Ahiabor – District Court, Adidome
His Worship William Baffoe – District Court , Cape Coast
His Worship Michael Boamah Gyamfi – District Court, Mampongteng
His Worship Jacob Amponsah – District Court, Ejisu
His Worship Frank Kingley Oppong – District Court , Kasoa
His Worship Samuel Esselwalker – District Court, Bolgatanga
His Worship Alfred K. A Mensah – District Court , Somanya
His Honour Seyram Tsatsu Azumah – Circuit Court, Akropong
His Worship Paul K. Alhassan – District Court, Agona
His Worship Albert Zoogah – District Court, Ashiaman
His Worship Courage Ofori Afriyie – District Court, Offinso
By:Marian Ansah/ citifmonline.com/Ghana