Civil society organization, the Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA) has lodged a complaint against the law firm of the wife of former UK Prime Minister, Tony Blaire, to the Solicitors Regulatory Authority (SRA) of the UK over its role in the US$170million judgment that was awarded against Ghana in the GPGC case.
ASEPA is asking the SRA to investigate Cherie Blair’s Omnia Strategy LLP for attorney negligence over the law firm’s failure to file an appeal on time while representing Ghana in the country’s case against the GPGC.
The CSO also requests that after the probe into Omnia’s negligence, it should be made to refund all the monies that Ghana has lost due to its negligence and also sanctioned.
“Omnis Strategy LLP acted as external Solicitors for Ghana in the recent arbitration between Ghana and the GPGC (Ghana Power Generating Company). After the initial arbitration, Omnia Strategy LLP convinced Ghana that it could canvas appeal on behalf of the State and as a result, they were retained as external solicitors,” ASEPA wrote.
“…Omnia Strategy LLP failed to file this so-called Appeal at the time (the) court had requested and later submitted a late Appeal to the Court which was rejected and cost awarded against Ghana including the cost of legal fees for the Solicitors of GPGC. We believe this is a classic case of Attorney Negligence that has cost Ghana US$170million,” ASEPA wrote in their complaint.
They added, “We are therefore requesting the SRA to officially investigate Omnia Strategy LLP, cause them to refund all payments back to Ghana and sanction them for willfully causing financial loss to the Republic of Ghana.”
The complaint was signed by ASEPA’s Executive Director, Mensa Thompson.
In response to the government’s termination of its Emergency Power Agreement with it, the GPGC had gone for international arbitration.
The Permanent Court of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Tribunal had first delivered its final award on 26th January 2021 after which Ghana had had a 28-day ultimatum to challenge same in a court of competent jurisdiction in the United Kingdom, the seat of the arbitration.
The Akufo-Addo government then engaged the services of an English law firm Omnia Strategy, which is owned by Cherie Blair, wife of Tony Blair, former Prime Minister of the UK at the expense of the Ghanaian taxpayer.
and its external solicitors went to sleep only to go to an English court on the 25th day of the 28-day ultimatum to ask for an extension of time. The court magnanimously gave an eight (8)-day extension to allow our external solicitors to file the appropriate processes.