Parliament approves Torkonoo’s nomination

Parliament has by consensus approved the nomination of Madam Getrude Araba Esaaba Sackey Torkonoo to occupy the position of Chief Justice (CJ) of Ghana.

The approval was made after the presentation of the Appointment Committee’s report by the Chairman of the Committee, Mr Joseph Osei Owusu and a few comments from members.

Haruna-Iddrisu, Former Minority Leader

Following her approval, Madam Torkonoo will step in the shoes of the former Chief Justice, Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah, who retired officially on Wednesday, May 24, 2023 from active service. Justice Anin-Yeboah served for 21 years as a Judge, serving three years as the Head of the Judiciary.

Madam Torkonoo will also be the third Chief Justice after Justice Georgina Theodora Wood and Justice Sophia Akuffo.

Speaking in favour of her nomination, Mr Osei-Owusu said the committee decided to approve the nominee based on her knowledge of the law.

He said the committee was also happy with her resolve to interpret the constitution without fear or favour.

“The committee, after considering the nominee, came to the conclusion that she showed character, competence and dexterity in the knowledge of the law. She pledged to interpret the law without fear or favour for the republic of Ghana.

Justice Gertrude Torkornoo

“The committee, therefore, recommends to the House to adopt this report by consensus and approve Justice Getrude Araba Esaaba Sackey Torkonoo as the Chief Justice of the republic of Ghana,” he said.

Showing support for her approval was the former Minority Leader, Mr Haruna Iddrisu.

He, however, pleaded with Madam Torkonoo to give some attention to Article 158 (2) of the 1992 constitution, which talks about the welfare of the judicial service of Ghana.

The Tamale South Legislator believes that given some form of attention to the said article will help curb the numerous strike actions that the service personnel embark on and help work to move on smoothly without interferences.

Mr Iddrisu also beseeched Madam Torkonoo to be mindful of the political atmosphere in the country and ensure to administer justice without fear or favour.

The former Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts and MP for Techiman North,  Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare said she was exceptionally happy that the nominee indicated her interest in ensuring that people seek other forms of dispute resolution in order to free the courts from numerous cases.

Madam Agyare said that the courts are choked and having a CJ who will see to speedy disposal of cases must be applauded.

The Minority Chief Whip and MP for Adaklu, Mr Governs Kwame Agbodza, also indicated her support for the nominee.

He, however, disagreed with Madam Torkonoo’s position on the issue of birth certificate not being proof of one’s citizenship.

Despite this disapproval, he said that Madam Torkonoo has risen through the ranks of the judicial service and hence deserves the CJ position.

Calling on the House to approve the nominee through a voice vote, Speaker Bagbin counseled members who disagree with any ruling of the Supreme Court to engage in constructive criticism, instead of scandalising the courts with unprintable words.


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