Muntaka retracts, apologises for bribery allegation against Supreme Court Justice

The Member of Parliament (MP) of Asawase, Mohammed Mubarak Muntaka has retracted and apologised for making bribery allegations against a Justice of the Supreme Court.

In a statement issued yesterday in Accra, he said “Based upon good counsel, I have also decided to let sleeping dogs lie and will consequently refrain from any further public commentary on the matter which, as I have indicated was originally reported to me by a female colleague Parliamentarian.”

Alhaji Muntaka, who is Chief Whip of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) caucus of Parliament, noted that his allegation was damaging to the reputation of the Justices of the Supreme Court and the Judiciary as he did not name the said Justice.

“Admittedly, because I did not specifically name any judge, this may have had the effect of scandalising the judiciary in its entirety” adding that “this unintended consequence is deeply regretted,” he stated.

He called on the general public and the media to respect his retraction and apology and expressed hope that the allegation would not disrupt the relationship between Parliament and the Judiciary.

“It is my fervent prayer that the existing historic cordial relations between the legislature and the judiciary will not be affected by this incident but will continue to grow in the interest of the country,” he said.

He said his decision was based on deep reflection and broad consultation on the allegation which he made during an interview on media organisation in Accra.

Mr Muntaka had alleged on Joy News that a Justice of the Supreme Court had promised to extend some privileges to a female NDC MP if she had voted for the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) Speaker of Parliament nominee, Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye.

“So shamefully, a Supreme Court Judge calls a colleague lady, telling her what they will give her. She has children, they will help her take care of her children.

She can take fuel from a filling station for the four years should she vote for Prof. Oquaye. So the NDC are going to look into it. We will look at the time he made those calls,” the Asawase Legislator stated.

Following the allegation, the Chief Justice, Kwasi Anin Yeboah, noted that the Judiciary had taken a serious view of the allegation and gave the assurance that he would investigate the matter.

A press statement signed by the Judicial Secretary, Justice Cynthia Pamela Addo, noted that the Chief Justice would seek the assistance of the MP to ascertain the facts and bring finality to the issue.

The Ghana Bar Association (GBA) described Mr Muntaka’s allegations as offensive and distasteful.

It explained that such allegations incite hatred for the Judges and expose them to ridicule.

The Association called on the MP to substantiate his bribery allegations or retract same and apologise to the Justices of the Supreme Court and the Judiciary in general.

By TIMES REPORTER

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