John-Peter Amewu, Acting Energy Minister and Member of Parliament for Hohoe Constituency in the Volta Region

Ghana’s Supreme Court has, in a unanimous decision, quashed the orders made by a High Court in Ho in the Volta Region, placing an interim injunction on the gazetting and swearing-in of Member of Parliament-elect for the Hohoe constituency and Minister for Energy, John Peter Amewu.

The High Court, presided over by Justice George Boadi, on December 23, 2020, granted an injunction after some residents of Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe and Lolobi (SALL) argued that their inability to vote in the just ended parliamentary election amounted to a breach of their rights.

The five-member panel of Ghana’s Apex Court, presided over by Justice Yaw Appau, in granting the application, said the interested parties did not say anything for the justification of the orders of the injunction that was granted.

The court said the Energy Minister had nothing to do with the denial of the Electoral Commission (EC) not to allow the people of Santrofi, Akpafu, Likpe and Lolobi (SALL) to vote.

The court said Mr Peter Amewu is not an official of the Electoral Commission but only presented himself up for a contest and won.

The court further said the interim injunction granted was for 10 days and had long elapsed on January 2, 2021, before the decision of the court.

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The interim injunction was, therefore, quashed.

But the panel unanimously declined the AG’s request seeking an order to prohibit the High Court of Justice George Boadi from further hearing or conducting proceedings in the said suit.

Background

The Ho High Court on December 23, 2020, presided over by Justice George Buadi granted an interim injunction restraining the Electoral Commission from gazetting Mr Amewu as the MP for Hohoe.

This followed an ex-parte application filed by residents of the Guan District, who were not given the opportunity to vote in the December 7 parliamentary election.

They said the creation of the Oti Region, coupled with a recent Supreme Court decision and failure of the EC to create a constituency for them, meant they did not vote for a parliamentary candidate in the just ended election.

But the state, through a Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Dame filed a motion at the Supreme Court to fight the injunction placed on Mr Amewu by the Ho High Court.

The Deputy Attorney General argued that the High Court, in exercising its human rights oversight, had no jurisdiction to grant the injunction as the SALL residents did not go through the proper procedure.

It is the case of the state that John Peter Amewu’s victory in the Hohoe parliamentary election was gazetted a day before the residents of SALL went to the High Court to place an injunction on the process.

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