Kelni GVG case: GRA to oppose suit

An Accra Human Rights High Court has given the opportunity to Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to file affidavit in opposition to the suit brought by two Ghanaians, seeking to stop the $89 million revenue monitoring contract between government and Kelni GVG.

The court, presided by Justice Anthony Yeboah, asked other defendants in the case to file their arguments on or before July 10.

Ms Sara Asafu-Adjaye and Maximus Ametorgoh argued that the contract was an infringement on their fundamental right to privacy.

Also joined to the motion on notice to enforce the fundamental human rights of the applicants as defendants, are the National Communications Authority (NCA), the Attorney-General, the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, Airtel Ghana, MTN Ghana, Tigo Ghana and Vodafone Ghana.

The applicants are seeking a declaration that plans of the Minister of Communications, the NCA and the GRA to implement the common platform (CP), by connecting real time to the entire switch of the physical network nodes of Airtel Ghana, MTN Ghana, Tigo Ghana and Vodafone Ghana, under the $179–million Kelni GVG contract, constitutes an infringement on the applicants’ fundamental human right to privacy.

The applicants are further demanding declaration that the conduct of Airtel Ghana, MTN Ghana, Tigo Ghana and Vodafone Ghana to grant access to the Minister of Communications, the NCA and the GRA to implement the common platform by connecting real time to the entire switch of their physical network nodes, constitutes an infringement on the applicants’ fundamental human right to privacy.

They are seeking a further declaration that the implementation of the common platform by the Minister of Communication, the NCA and the GRA by connecting real time to the entire switch of the physical network nodes of Airtel Ghana, MTN Ghana, Tigo Ghana and Vodafone is in breach of Section 7 of the Communication Service Tax (Amendment) Act, 2013 (ACT 864).

The applicants are also seeking a declaration that the implementation of the common platform by the Minister of Communication, the NCA and the GRA by connecting real time to the entire switch of the physical network nodes of the Airtel Ghana, MTN Ghana, Tigo Ghana and Vodafone Ghana is in breach of Section 73 of the Electronic Communications Act 2008 (Act 775).

The applicants are praying the court to grant an order of perpetual injunction against the respondents by restraining them from implementing the common platform through connecting real time to the entire switch of the physical network nodes or in any other way which will infringe the applicant’s fundamental human rights to privacy.

Meanwhile, the court, in a different case seeking the disclosure of contract documents issued a six-day ultimatum to the Ministry of Communication on July 3, 2018, to submit documents on the monitoring revenue contract to the applicants.

Selorm Brantie, John Ato Bonful, Naana Adom Boakye Kanyi, who filed the suit, argued that the Minister of Communications ought to have prior approval from the Minister of Finance as well as Parliament in accordance with Section 33 of Act 921 and Article 181 of the 1992 Constitution.

It is the case of the plaintiff that the Minister of Communications failed to secure the requisite statutory and constitutional approvals before executing the contract, and, thus, rendered the contract illegal. Plaintiff asked for a declaration that all payments under the contract are illegal.

They asked for an order that the contract between the Ministry of Communication and Kelni GVG is in violation of the Public Financial Management Act, 2016 (Act 921) and hence illegal.

BY MALIK SULLEMANA

email
Print Friendly

Leave a Comment