Parliament has, by consensus, approved the nomination of Justice Sophia Akuffo as the new Chief Justice to head the administration of Justice in Ghana.


Justice Akuffo becomes the fifth Chief Justice under the fourth republic after Isaac Kobina Abban who served between 1995 and 2001 and 13th in the history of the Republic of Ghana.


Justice Akuffo, born on 20th December 1949, holds a Masters degree in Law (LLM) from the Havard University in the United States of America and was appointed Justice of the Supreme Court on 30th November, 1995.


She has held a number of leadership positions including the Chairperson of the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council (2003 to date); Vice President of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights where she served out two statutory terms of two years (2008 - 2012); Head of the African Union General Elections Observation Mission to the Republic of Mozambique and Uganda in October 2014 and February 2016, respectively.


The Chairman of the Appointments Committee of Parliament and First Deputy Speaker, Joseph Osei-Owusu, who moved the motion for the adoption of the Twelfth Report of the  Committee on the nominee, said the "Committee is persuaded of her eligibility, competence and suitability and recommends by consensus the nominee for approval. "


"The Committee observed that given her high standard of competence and integrity, forthrightness and independence of thought, astuteness and in-depth appreciation of the law, fairness and selflessness, the nominee qualifies to serve as the Chief Justice," he said.


Justice Akuffo, during her  vetting, spent over five hours before the Committee, responding to questions on her judicial philosophy, the Conditions of Service of Magistrates and Judges,  archaic guidelines and regulations, court automation and the perception of corruption in the judiciary.


She also responded to questions in relation to plans to ensure high professional standard of the legal profession; scrapping of the Ghana School of Law; establishment of Sanitation Courts and the Judicial Police; obstacles to justice delivery; challenges with the country’s legal system, regulations on lawyers advertising on social media and the relevance of the Ghana Law School, among others.


She was expected to be sworn-in by President Akufo-Addo as the next Chief Justice at 13:00GMT, yesterday at the Banquet Hall, State House.


Source: ISD (Gilbert Ankrah )


Created: 20 June 2017
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