Home News Crime Supreme Court withholds Gitmo 2 Judgment; directs parties to file final submissions

Supreme Court withholds Gitmo 2 Judgment; directs parties to file final submissions

The Supreme Court is withholding judgement on the controversial Gitmo 2 application until the two parties file final submissions on the matter.

The court presided over by Justice William Atuguba said the case may have far reaching implications on the country for which reason both the applicant and the defendant must address the court on whether Ghana can unilaterally walk away from an international treaty or agreement once it is deemed to have contravened Ghana’s Constitution.

Two applicants-86-year-old retired Conference Officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Margaret Bamfo and a student at the Ghana School of Law, Henry Nana Boakye are challenging a rather controversial agreement ex-president John Mahama entered into with the US government which allowed the former to bring into Ghana, two terror suspects who had been quarantined at the Guantanomo Bay in the US for 14-years.

The applicants held the agreement had serious security implications for the West African country and should have been ratified by Ghana’s Parliament.

In the midst of the controversy that attended the arrival of Mahmud Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Al-Dhuby in January last year, the two applicants proceeded to the Apex court with a suit against the Attorney General and Minister of Justice as well as the Minister for the Interior, accusing government of illegally bringing in the two former Gitmo detainees, without recourse to the laws of the land.

The two applicants sought a true and proper interpretation of Article 75 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, which talks about international treaties and agreements.

After months of hearing, the Supreme Court was expected to give its judgement today but deferred to June 22, with an order for the plaintiff and defence to give their final submission.

Justice William Atuguba wanted lawyers for the two parties to elucidate on whether Ghana can pull out of an international agreement that is already in force.

The judge also wanted to know what the positions of the two lawyers are on Articles 84 and 85 which empowers the National Security as a body to take internal and external security decisions on behalf of Ghana, as happened in the arrival of the two terror suspects.

He wanted the two parties to explore whether it can be binding on the state for the National Security with specialized persons to take a decision without Parliamentary approval.

Justice Atuguba said this is the first time Article 75 is being interpreted in this form and wants to give a judgement that will stand the test of time.

The two are to submit their final submission on May 24, prior to the day of judgement on June 22, 2017.

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