CLEANSE THE BENCH OF CORRUPTION

It has never happened before in the history of Ghana! A bribery scandal of enormous proportion rocked the country yesterday, with 34 judges and others staff of the Judicial Service being cited in an undercover investigative work by Anas Aremeyaw Anas, a journalist.

The revelation has shaken the very foundation of the country’s judicial system and confirmed a long held perception that the Judiciary is, indeed, corrupt.

The Times is as shocked and flaggerbasted as all Ghanaians are, by the sheer weight of the allegations of bribery and extortion of money from litigants.

In the past and until the exposure yesterday, many Ghanaians, both high and low, have had occasion in the past to complain about corruption in the Judicial Service.

Often, when such allegations are thrown at the Judiciary, the response has always been that those making the allegation should provide evidence; and no one had been able to come out openly with such overwhelming evidence that would expose the canker in the judiciary.

The evidence uncovered has tended to tarnish the image of the entire Judiciary.

It is, unfortunate, however, that it is only a few personalities on the Judiciary who have decided to ignore the principles of the noble profession, and indulged in such acts.

The Times is, however, happy about the swift reaction of Her Ladyship, the Chief Justice, Georgina Wood, and the Judicial Council in suspending those implicated in the investigations.

We fully support the action of the Judicial Council and hope it would be the beginning of efforts at clearing the bench of corrupt members who may be betraying their sacred oath.

Indeed, this is the opportune time to send a strong signal that none of those who take bribes and subvert justice deserve a place in the judicial system.

It is important, however, for all to remain calm in order to deal with this huge scandal in a manner that would not damage the judiciary unduly.

It is the duty of all to protect the sanctity of the Judiciary and all those who seek to serve on it must be men of high morality.

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