Sunday, 24 March 2013

Ghana Politics: Young Patriots Spit Venom On Justice Kpegah

Justice Kpegah    
Justice Kpegah

Pro-opposition pressure group, Young Patriots, has accused former Supreme Court Judge, Justice Francis Yaonasu Kpegah of refusing to pay over GH¢689,000 in rent and utility bills owed to the State.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, March 20, 2013, the group expressed its “its disgust at the abuse and deliberate running down of a State Bungalow and the refusal to pay rent by no less a person than a retired Supreme Court Judge, who ought to know better”.
The statement said: “Ever since his resignation from the Judicial Service as a Supreme Court Judge on the December 4, 2008, which required that he vacates his property, Justice Kpegah has been living on the largess of the state, for the last six and half years”.
The Young Patriots said it can confirm that Justice Kpegah “resided at his Osu residence, close to the Passport Office, adjacent the Apex Bank, for two years before his December 4 resignation and has refused to vacate this property”.
“Over this period, he has refused to pay rent, water bill and electricity bill for this 5-bedroom house property he occupies with his wife and two children, out of the eleven (11) he has”.
The statement signed by Hopeson Adorye, Richard Nyamah and Fred Amnakwah noted that: “The property is going for a market value of $6,000 a month, but was discounted at $3,000 for a month because of his status as a Supreme Court judge. This will bring it to a total of $324,000 (GH¢618,840) for the 6½ year duration, which he owes. We can also confirm that Justice Kpegah owes water bill to the tune of GH¢23,000, with electricity bill totalling some GH¢48,000 yet unpaid”.

It asserted that, “Justice Kpegah owes a total of GH¢689,840.00 on rent and utility bills on the 5-bedroom state bungalow. This bungalow has been rundown so badly that it even houses poultry and pigs”.  
“As though this was not enough, we can confirm that a Tata 4x4 vehicle he acquired, through hire purchase, has still not been fully paid for.  Furthermore, a Peugeot 607 vehicle allocated to him by the Judicial Service when he was a Supreme Court Judge, also to be paid for through hire purchase has not been paid for”.
The group said it “expected Justice Kpegah to pay the rent plus utility bills he owes which amounts to GH¢689,840.00 and also pay for the cars he drives”.    
The accusations follow a recent law suit filed by Justice Kpegah against the main opposition New Patriotic Party’s 2012 Flagbearer Nana Akufo Addo challenging his qualification as a lawyer.
In the writ, filed on Tuesday March 19, 2013, Justice Kpegah indicted former President Kufuor for appointing Nana Akufo Addo to serve as his Chief Legal Advisor while in office between 2001 and 2008.
He averred that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was “impersonating W.A.D Akufo Addo who is on the roll of lawyers as No. 1190”.
Among the seven reliefs being sought by Justice Kpegah is: “A declaration that on a true and proper interpretation of the General Legal Council Act, Act 38 of 1960 (as amended), unless a person is called to the Bar in Ghana and his name entered in the Roll of Lawyers by the body mandated under the said Act 38 (as amended) to regulate the training and certification of persons after a prescribed course of study, that person cannot be deemed competent to practice law in any court of Ghana.”
Besides seeking the High Court to declare Nana Akufo Addo ineligible to practise as a lawyer in Ghana, Justice Kpegah is also praying the court to close down Nana Akufo Addo’s Chambers by declaring that: “The Law Firm established as Akufo-Addo, Prempeh and Co. at 67 Kojo Thompson Road, Adabraka, Accra is an illegal law firm and therefore not competent to represent any party in litigation before any court in Ghana".
Additionally, the former Acting Chief Justice has prayed the Court to put a perpetual injunction on Nana Akufo Addo restraining him from “holding himself out as a lawyer competent to practise in the Ghanaian courts or anybody regarding him as such.”
The Young Patriots said: “What Justice Kpegah is telling Ghanaians is that Nana Akufo-Addo indulged in self-impersonation, which is in itself very ridiculous”.
The group alleged that: “This clandestine plot was hatched during the tenure and with the full knowledge and sadly, the blessing of the late President, John Evans Atta-Mills. This writ filed by Justice Kpegah was done with the help of former deputy Chief of Staff, Alex Segbefia. We will leave the finer details for later”. 

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