Gabby questions Mahama’s Supreme Court nominations.
Gabby Otchere Darko says the nomination of former PNC politician to the Supreme Court indicates a worrying signal that partisan considerations may influence the choice of the next Electoral Commissioner.
His comments follow the nomination of former General Secretary of the People’s National Convention (PNC), Mr. Gabriel Pwamang as one of two presidential nominations to the Supreme Court.
Lawyer Pwamang also stood for Navrongo Central parliamentary elections in 2008, 2004 and a bye-election there in 2003. His best show was in 2004 where he got 20% of the votes.
Gabby Otchere Darko says Pwamang’s party is ideologically close to the governing National Democratic Congress and that may raise suspicions.
His other worry about the president’s choice is that even though Pwamang is an experienced lawyer, he is not an “exceptionally extraordinary lawyer” to be made a Supreme Court judge.
The other nomination to the Supreme Court is the Sole Commissioner of the Judgement debt Commission, Justice Yaw Appau, a Court of Appeal judge.
Gabby Asare Otchere Darko described the nominations as “interesting” even though he did not totally object to the appointment of the former politician to the highest pinnacle of the Bench.
He cited Justice Professor Tawia Modibo Ocran as one such example of a politician who was appointed as a judge.
Once associated with the Convention Peoples Party, Justice Professor Tawia Modibo Ocran was also a seasoned academic with an interdisciplinary Ph.D in Law and Development Studies.
He also taught for 20 years as a Professor of Law at the University of Akron School of Law in Ohio, USA, retiring from there, as holder of an endowed research professorship in law and Professor Emeritus, upon his appointment to the Supreme Court of Ghana in 2004.
But this background is lacking in Gabriel Pwamang’s nomination, Gabby suggested.
Mr. Pwamang is a respected private legal practitioner and is Managing Partner at Pwamang & Associates and also Lawyer at Centre for Public Interest Law (CEPIL).
According to the former Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, the nomination of Gabriel Pwamang suffers a further credential deficit because he was chosen right from the bar to the very top of the Bench.
He conjectured that if a future NPP President was to appoint former NPP General Secretary Sir John to the Supreme Court, “what are you going to say?”
With a sharp focus on the President, as a vacancy has been created at the Electoral Commission, Gabby Otchere Darko is worried that the consideration that went into choosing Pwamang could be employed again.
Pressure has been brought on the president to do wide consultations before choosing the next Electoral Commissioner following the imminent retirement of Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan.
“Then what can we expect for our next EC Chairman?” Gabby Otchere Darko painted a suspicious possibility of what he believes could be another partisan appointment in the coming weeks.