It is quite clear that Mr. John Ndebugri, the lawyer for most of the 34 judges indicted on bribery and corruption charges, is still in denial of the fact that the judiciary, as Ghanaians have come to know it, is effectively kaput.
It has lost its every fiber and iota of credibility. In essence, Ghana is presently in a state of judicial free fall. In practical terms, the third arm of democratic governance is decidedly AWOL. And as I hinted in a previous article, it would take at least two to three generations, if ever, before the integrity and credibility of Ghana?s judicial system could be restored.
Consequently, it is rather preposterous for Mr. Ndebugri to imperiously accuse Ghanaian citizens who trooped to the Accra International Conference Center (AICC) on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015, to bear witness to Mr. Anas Aremeyaw Anas? path-paving documentary exposing some 34 judges and magistrates caught red-handed in the act of compromising their professional and public trust of being in contempt of a court order (See ?Everyone Who Saw Anas? Video in Contempt of Court ? Ndebugri? Citifmonline.com / Ghanaweb.com 9/23/15). First of all, the judges caught in Mr. Anas? investigative net are public servants whose salaries are paid by the Ghanaian taxpayer. They cannot, therefore, presume to instruct their employers on how to deal with forensically sustainable evidence inescapably underscoring their flagrant breach of public trust and possible acts of criminality.
These judges do not appear to have had any problem with the routine parading of petty thieves with the evidence of their thefts or thievery through our principal streets and alleyways; and so why are they now making a special pleading for the protection of the products/fruits of their egregious acts of criminality from full and frontal public view? To be certain, Justice Dery?s desperate attempt to stop the public screening of Mr. Anas? stinging audiovisual documentary is rather the more serious offence; for not only does it expose Justice Dery for the insufferably arrogant scam-artist that he has been demonstrably shown to be, his injunction application is in distasteful and inexcusable contempt of Ghanaian citizens at least. At any rate, who does this indicted high court judge think he is but a veritable prime criminal suspect awaiting trial and imprisonment? Or does he, predictably, think he stands well above the laws of the land?
Needless to say, Mr. Dery has made the cases of his indicted associates even worse by cavalierly presuming to use legal technicalities to insult the intelligence of Ghanaian citizens. His argument that making the Anas video documentary available for public viewing may prejudice public opinion against him and his colleagues is, to say the least, scandalously lame. If he sincerely believes he has not committed any act of criminality, then, of course, it wouldn?t matter whether ten-thousand screenings of the Anas documentary were shown to the public. For ultimately, it is the strength of the evidence that he is able to present in court in self-defense that would determine whether he walks as a free man or is convicted and made to spend some time in the slammer. That, of course, would be a vintage taste of his own brew. For he knew fully well when he opted to wear his judicial periwig and gown that willfully compromising his own integrity and perverting the rule of law and justice were bound to render him a prime victim of the same.
Mr. Ndebugri cannot be taken seriously, and I hope his hapless clients see the light and get rid of him sooner than later, before it becomes too late to salvage whatever may be left of their mortally dented images and reputations. His suggestion that lawyers in the pay of Justice Dery ought to have mounted ?powerful cameras,? like those used by Mr. Anas? Tiger-Eye team of Private Investigators, at the Accra International Conference Center, in order to capture the images of citizen spectators of the Anas video and have them arrested and arraigned before the courts is, to say the least luridly absurd. And just who would be qualified to play judge here, by the way?
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
Garden City, New York
E-mail: [email protected]