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Supreme Court dismisses Dr Opuni’s application to prohibit High Court judge from hearing his case

Supreme Court dismisses Dr Opuni’s application to prohibit High Court judge from hearing his case

The Supreme Court has dismissed as meritorious an application filed by Dr. Stephen Opuni invoking the inherent jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to prohibit the trial judge from handling his case.

Dr. Opuni in his statement of claim indicated that there have been persistent acts of bias on the part of the trial judge and if the trial judge is not prohibited, he won’t be fair to him.

According to Dr. Opuni, the judge he purports to prohibit has already taken a position in the matter under adjudication, hence his application before the court.

The former Ghana Cocobod CEO, Seidu Agongo, and the Managing Director of Agricult Ghana Limited, a fertilizer manufacturing company, are being prosecuted for alleged involvement in procurement breaches and causing financial loss to the state in a fertilizer deal.

Dr Opuni explained that on July 25, 2023, the High Court adopted the proceedings and those proceedings weren’t made available to his legal team.

He contends that he doesn’t know the content of the day’s proceedings except a document that was waived by the judge.

“My Lords, the Proceedings were about three thousand pages. We asked for the proceedings and the judge called the registrar to furnish us with the proceedings adopted.

“What made me suspicious was that the judge said he wouldn’t make a further order for the proceedings to be given to us,” he said.

Chief State Attorney, Evelyn Keelson, opposed the application.

She said the applicant has not been able to raise any credible issues of bias .

According to her, “What he (the applicant) has told the court are mere allegations and complaints.”

She further stated that the judge gave directives to all the parties to apply for the proceedings but the applicant didn’t apply for the proceedings and that’s why he doesn’t have it.

She recounts that the applicant waited until the day when the court was to adopt the proceedings and even on that day the registrar was called to supply them with the proceedings.

She further averred that the applicant has failed to properly invoke the Supreme Court’s inherent jurisdiction to prohibit the trial court judge.

The panel of five justices presided over by Justice Gabriel Pwamang said, “We have read the processes filed and listened to both lawyers and we are not convinced that the trial judge exhibited any bias. We hereby dismiss the application for prohibition.”

Source: Ghana News

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