A LAW lecturer, Mr. Yaw Donkor, has observed that the Justice Dzamefe Commission report’s recommendation for further investigation into the Brazil 2014 fiasco – after it has completed its work – defeats the purpose for which it was set up.
He also said the release of a White Paper on the Justice Dzamefe Commission report, prior to publishing the report itself, was unconstitutional.
Mr Donkor was speaking on Joy FM and Multi TV’s Newsfile news analysis programme last Saturday.
The law lecturer said Article 23 of Ghana’s Constitution, which prescribes the setting up of Commissions of Enquiries and related matters, has been breached.
“The whole exercise of setting up a Commission Enquiry is under Chapter 23 [of the Constitution], and when you read Article 280 it states: ‘The President shall, subject to Clause Four of this article, cause to be published the report of a Commission of Inquiry together with the White Paper on it within six months after the date of the submission of the report by the commission’. So in my own limited understanding of the law, you cannot publish a White Paper without a publication of the report itself”, he stressed.
The law lecturer proceeded to quote Clause 4 of Article 23, noting that if, for some reason, the report of the Commission could not be published, the President should have issued a statement to that effect giving clear reasons.
The Attorney-General, Marietta Appiah-Oppong, earlier this week, presented a White Paper on the Justice Senyo Dzamefe Commission report that sought to investigate Ghana’s poor showing at the World Cup tournament in Brazil last year.
The White Paper revealed that the Ghana Football Association and its President, Kwesi Nyantakyi, will face a forensic audit for financial dealings in matches played by the Black Stars in the lead up to the 2014 FIFA tournament in Brazil.
Yaw Donkor said it is not for nothing that the framers of the constitution prescribed that the White Paper be published with the report of any commission of inquiry.
“Because it concerns a possibility where the White Paper may be published without the report itself, and then anybody can do whatever they please in the White Paper, including misquoting the report [of the commission],” he explained.
However, Mahama Ayariga, Science and Technology Minister, who was also on the discussion programme, informed the show that the report had been gazetted together with the White Paper.
Mr. Ayariga maintained that the Commission’s report was available for purchase at the Assembly Press, the state publisher.
But Abdul Malik Kwaku Baako Jnr refuted Mr Ayariga’s claims, insisting that as at Friday, the Assembly Press had no copies of the report.
“Look let’s stop this. Let’s stop playing this game. We are being told that the thing [report] is bulky; only three copies were made available by the Commission; they didn’t make available an electronic version…so there is certainly a problem with how this presentation was done”, Kwaku Baako said on the show.
Yaw Donkor further stated that the work of the Justice Senyo Dzamefe-chaired commission of inquiry was not complete.
“The basic duty of a commission of inquiry is to find or establish facts as I understand it,” he said.
According to him, per details of the White Paper, the Commission made the recommendation that if Travel Matters, a transportation companies contracted by the GFA, had not been paid some monies owed it, then payment should be paid.
“Was it not the duty of the Commission to establish as a fact, that Travel Matters has been paid or not been paid any monies,” he said.
According to him, the Commission’s recommendation for further investigation into the Brazil 2014 fiasco – after it had completed its work – defeated the purpose for which it was set up.
In Mr Donkor’s view, the setting up of the Commission of Inquiry had proved to be unnecessary.