We have forgiven Honyenuga -Minority
Parliament, yesterday, approved the nomination of the four persons as justices of the Supreme Court by the President.
The nominees – Justice Clemence Jackson Honyenuga, Justice Issifu Omoro Tanko Amadu, Mr Emmanuel Yonny Kulendi and Prof. Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu – went through a successful public hearing last week and were approved yesterday.
In a report read by the Chairman of the Appointments Committee, Mr Joseph Osei-Wusu, indicated that the committee duly considered the nominations in the light of the provisions of the 1992 Constitution and Order 74 of the Standing Orders of the House, and was satisfied that the nominees exhibited character, competence, independent thinking, and depth of knowledge of the law.
He said the nominees assured the committee of the will to be above partnership, and interpret the law without fear or favour in the discharge of their duties.
He continued that no evidence of corruption, incompetence, or bias in the performance of their respective roles in the legal sector was brought before the committee.
But, before the voting and their approval, the members were given the opportunity to contribute and comment on the committee’s report.
Mr Haruna Iddrisu, Minority Leader in Parliament, while commenting on one of the nominees, Mr Justice Honyenuga, said that people should let sleeping dogs lie because the man apologised.
He said that Mr Honyenuga indicated that his comments were to win development projects as a chief of his community, hence, people should not hold his comments against him.
“On Clemence Honyenuga, he was asked to explain further a comment he made some time back which purported to endorse Nana Akufo-Addo.
“He said he did it in order to win development projects as a chief, and again he said I am sorry and I apologise. I don’t think anybody should hold this issue against him beyond I am sorry and I apologise, except that ethical standards must be held at its highest level.”
It would be recalled that during the vetting, Mr Honyenuga was questioned about a comment he made which purported to endorse President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his position as a chief his community.
The nominee apologised for the comments and said he was sorry if the comments denigrate anyone or attack their political career.
The committee, after vetting all the four, gave the other three a pass, but referred Mr Honyenuga’s case to the plenary to be debated, but that didn’t happen.
Commenting on Professor Henrietta Mensah-Bonsu, Mr Iddrisu indicated that she is very brilliant and has paid her dues very well. She has helped shape the criminal law of the country.
He indicated that Professor Henrietta demonstrated wits when she served as a member of the National Reconciliation Committee, and added that it is important that justices of the Supreme Court show their support to the law, not to the appointed authority.
On Mr Emmanuel Yonny Kulendi, the Minority Leader said that the nominee worked in the President’s chambers, so their concern was that he will he be showing loyalty to the constitution or the person who appointed him, but the nominee has undoubtedly exhibited professionalism in his work.
He also indicated that the nominee’s response on the ceiling for the number of judges to the Supreme Court and financial autonomy of the judiciary were very significant.
On Justice Issifu Tanko, whose nomination he described as a case of elevation and progression from the Appeals Court to the Supreme Court, he said the only thing was that he didn’t please the Moslem community while responding to a question on the wearing of the Hijab in Ghana, but what was remarkable was that he said Ghanaians should not reduce faith and believe in God to their way of dressing.