Supreme Court dismisses Assin North MP review application
The Supreme Court panel presided over by Justice Jones Dotse noted that the MP’s application lacked merit and accordingly dismissed the same.
The Supreme Court has described a review application filed by the embattled Member of Parliament for Assin North, James Gyekye Quayson as ‘lacking merit’ and thus has unanimously dismissed the same.
On March 16, 2022, lawyers for Hon James Gyakye Quayson filed two applications in the case that is seeking to injunct him from holding himself as a Member of Parliament in Ghana.
One of the two applications was meant to halt the injunction proceedings while the other sought a review of the March 8, 2022 ruling of the Apex Court.
On March 8, 2022, the Supreme Court presided over by Justice Jones Dotse dismissed an objection raised by counsel for the Assin North MP relative to the service of court processes on him through the Daily Graphic.
According to counsel, the said publication, which followed an order of the Court, did not contain all court processes and thus flew in the face of the court’s order.
The apex court on February 22, granted a motion for substituted service filed by the applicant, Mr. Michael Ankomah Nimfah, who is in court seeking the interpretation of Article 94(2a) and injunction of the Member of Parliament for Assin North from holding himself as such.
On his part, the lawyer for the applicant, Frank Davis indicated that the misunderstanding of the Daily Graphic Publication by the MP’s Counsel was far from the fact that they had not been served to note that other modes of services were complied with.
The Court Registrar told the court that all the needed documents for the case had been served on the MP’s legal team per a response received by his outfit from Mr. Justin Teriwajah, a member of the team.
Also, the Attorney General indicated that the letter written by a Member of the MP’s legal team to the court Registrar and subsequent documents received indicated that they had been given sufficient of the case.
The Court on its part observed that it did not expect all processes to be published in a substituted service and that such a service is only meant to notify of party of a suit that is pending before it thus dismissing Mr. Tsikata’s Objection by a unanimous decision.
Additionally, the court on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, had to also rule on the issue of whether the case is ripe. By a majority of 6 to 1, it ruled in the affirmative indicating that the MP was duly served.
The Court has thus ordered Hon. Quayson filed all processes on or before March 16, 2022, and adjourned the case accordingly to the said date.
Appearing in court on Wednesday, March 16, 2022, Tsatsu Tsikata, counsel for the MP, told the court that his side had filed two(2) two applications; one of which sought to halt the proceedings and the other seeking a review of the court’s ruling of March 8, 2022.
The court thus adjourned to March 29, 2022, to hear the applications.
However, on Tuesday, March 29, 2022, when the case was expected to be moved per the court’s previous orders, Mr.Tsatsu Tsikata, counsel for the MP, notified the court that his side had filed on the previous day, another motion which sought the court’s permission to file a supplementary statement in support of its review application.
He, therefore, impressed upon the court to consider it despite it being filed late but Frank Davies, counsel for the applicant opposed the request noting that it was a tactic to delay the case before the court thus praying the court not to consider the same.
The court in its ruling granted Mr. Tsikata’s motion for leave and duly adopted the same as part of the review application.
When called upon by their Lordships to move the review application, Mr. Tsikata however prayed the court for an adjournment to allow him to study the applicant’s affidavit in opposition but was strongly resisted and declined by the court thus counsel had to move the application.
MOVING THE REVIEW APPLICATION
In moving the application for review, Mr. Tsikata impressed on the Supreme Court to set aside the ruling of the ordinary bench relative to the fact that his client had been duly served per the order of substituted service.
He noted that the ruling committed grave errors which had occasioned a miscarriage of justice.
Additionally, he noted that the substituted service flew in the face of the court’s order because the publication was done only in respect of the order for substituted service by the court.
After hearing the argument by counsel, the court adjourned to April 5, 2022, to give its ruling on the application.
On Tuesday, April 5, 2022, the ordinary Supreme Court Bench presided over by Justice Jones Dotse and consisted of Agnes Dordzie, Nene Amegatcher, Prof Ashie Kotey, Mariama Owusu, Gertrude Torkonoo, Clemence Honyenuga, Prof Henrietta Mensah Bonsu and Emmanuel Y. Kulendi were joined by Prof Ashie Kotey and Justice Clemence Honyenuga to form the review panel.
In its ruling, Justice Jones Dotse noted that the MP’s application lacked merit and accordingly dismissed the same.
In July 2021, the Cape Coat High Court presided over by Justice Kwasi Boakye annulled the Assin North Parliamentary election.
He also restrained Hon James Quayson from holding himself as MP for the Constituency.
This was the Judgment of an election petition filed by a resident of Assin North, Michael Nimfah who challenged the eligibility of Mr. Quayson to hold the office as an MP.
The petitioner also contended that Hon Quayson was not eligible on the basis that at the time of filing his parliamentary nomination, he held citizenship of another country (Canada) in addition to Ghana.
The MP has since the above Judgment of the Court, gone to the Court of Appeal to quash the Judgement of the High Court and in the Supreme Court to challenge a ruling of the Court of Appeal.