Transfer Kennedy Agyapong contempt case to different judge – SC

The Supreme Court (SC), has in a unanimous decision ordered that the contempt case against the Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong, be transferred to a different judge.

The case was heard by Justices Baffoe Bonnie, Yaw Appau, Gabriel Pwamang, Amadu Tanko and Yonni Kulendi.

According to the SC, Justice Amos Wuntah Wuni is prohibited from hearing the matter any further.

This was after lawyers for the MP had accused the judge of demonstrating hostility towards them.

The MP on September 18, filed for a review application at the SC to stop contempt proceedings against him and also quash the order of summons for him to appear before the court as the High Court had no jurisdiction to do so.

This follows a summon by the judge after the MP allegedly on live television used unprintable words on the High Court judge. 

Although Justice Wuni had argued that nothing barred him from proceeding with the case, he adjourned it to September 25 to hear further legal arguments from Mr Agyapong’s lawyers.

But, the SC in its ruling Wednesday October 14, 2020, insisted Justice Wuni was prohibited from hearing the case.

Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, has told the SC that comments made by Mr Agyapong regarding a Justice of the High Court were scandalous.

The legislator’s lawyers had urged the SC to stop the High Court Judge Wuni from hearing the contempt case.

Lead Counsel for Mr Agyapong, Mr Kwame Gyan, on Wednesday moved the application, explaining that the comments made by the MP were  directed at another Justice of the High Court and not Justice Wuni.

He also said even if the comments referred to Justice Wuni, by hearing the matter, he had breached the rules of natural justice by being a judge in his own cause.

Mr Gyan accused Justice Wuni of “demonstrating extreme hostility” towards Mr Agyapong.

Mr Gyan explained that the judge said during proceedings that if the MP touches a live wire, he will be electrocuted.

He said that even when he insisted during the proceedings that evidence of the comments made by the MP should be obtained and made available to the judge, the judge asked that they can get the video from Net2.

He further alleged that the charge sheet handed to him in the course of the trial was not even signed.

However, the panel of judges presided by Justice Bonnie said such defects did not affect the substantive proceedings.

Mr Dame opposed the application by Mr Agyapong’s lawyers, saying it erroneously assumed that the mere separation of the High Court into divisions made it different.

The Deputy Attorney General argued that there is only one High Court and it can take up any matter of contempt.

He told the court that the only matter that ought to generate the attention of the SC was whether or not the comments made by the MP scandalised the court.

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