Private legal practitioner Chris Ackumey has described as unfortunate the judiciary’s reaction to the findings of a survey conducted by Professor Raymond Atuguba.
The Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo and other judges have rebuked the Legon law professor over his latest research which concluded that judges at the Supreme Court, in times when the law is gray on a matter, vote on political cases in favor of the government that appointed them.
“It is an American type of research that you have done…that’s fine, but please be careful what you are importing into our environment… They [Americans] are used to that, we are not. I don’t think there was a single judge who agreed with what you were saying,” the Chief Justice said.
Justice Jones Dotse described the research as an “insult of the highest order” to judges.
Commenting on the issue, Mr. Ackumey told Morning Starr host Francis Abban Monday that the judiciary should be welcoming of the report and open itself for constructive criticism.
“The findings are apt and helps us know what is happening in the higher Judicial ladder for those who are seeking Justice. We do researches in Fishing, Religion among others and so this research is to ensure improvement. This research is based on 100 selected cases. We need to welcome the findings and know what is going wrong and correct them. The research findings should be taken more seriously by the Judiciary and work towards it. The Judiciary must look at the research and adjust to make things better, the kind of reaction we are having is unfortunate,” he said.
He also bemoaned the refusal of lawyers to comment on matters directly involving judges over fear of being victimized.
“It is unfortunate many are treating the SC judges as people who cannot make mistakes. This is pretense and hypocrisy on the part of the many lawyers who may not want to comment on the research”.