Ghana’s apex court has ruled that Mr. Martin Alimisi Burns Kaizer Amidu can continue to occupy his position as Special Prosecutor in spite of the fact that he was appointed after he was officially regarded as a pensioner.
In a Majority decision, five of the eight Justices who heard the case voted in favour of the State which was defending Amidu, while two voted against.
The judgment becomes a judicial precedent that plaintiff, Dr. Dominic Ayine, interprets as dangerous, according to him, it creates an opportunity for old public servants who should retire, to stay on and thus prevent young people aspiring to work in the public service, employment opportunities.
Chief Justice Kwesi Anin-Yeboah, who had read the judgment said the full written judgment will be ready tomorrow.
Dr. Ayine, a former Deputy Attorney General in the Mahama government had gone to court challenging the appointment of Amidu as the first SP on grounds that at 66, Amidu was legally past the retirement age for public servants and therefore should not have been appointed by the President.
According to him, per the true and proper interpretation of Articles 190(1)(d), 199(1) and 295 of the 1992 Constitution, the retirement age of all holders of public offices created pursuant to Article 190 (1)(d) is 60 years, and not beyond 65 years.
Article 190(1), he pointed out, states “The Public Services of Ghana shall include” (d) such other public services as Parliament may by law prescribe
199(1) states “A public officer shall, except as otherwise provided in this Constitution, retire from the public service on attaining the age of sixty years.”
He said the appointment of Amidu therefore contravenes even section 13(3) of the Office of the Special Prosecutor Act, 2018 (Act 959).
However, Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame countered that the Special Prosecutor’s Office is a specialized agency and therefore cannot be treated like any other public agency.
Chief Justice Anin Yeboah, Justices Baffoe Bonnie, Marful Sau Prof Ashie Kotei and Nene Amegatcher ruled in favour of the Attorney General dismissing the case against Mr. Amidu.
Justices Sule Gbadegbe and Agnes Dodzie ruled in favour of the plaintiff.
The Chief Justice who announced the judgment then said the written judgments would be ready for pick up tomorrow.
Mr. Martin Amidu was not in court for the judgment. Ever since he was ruled out as a witness by the court which said the State was the personality on trial, Mr. Amidu has not been in court.