Court throws out writ of NGO

A Fast Track High Court in Accra, on Monday dismissed an injunction brought before it by Corporate Social Responsibility Movement (CSRM), a Tema-based non-governmental organisation (NGO).

The action of the NGO sought to restrain Pioneer Food Cannery [PFC] from the construction of an Offal Recycling Plant at its premises in Tema without obtaining the requisite permits from the authorities.

The court presided over by Justice Edward Amoakoh Asante, said the plaintiffs’ application had no merit, and awarded GHc 1,000.00 cost in favour of the defendants (PFC).

Justice Amoakoh Asante explained that by Order 25 of the Civil Procedure Rules 2004 C 147, the court grants interim injunctions in certain situation based on the discretion that must be exercised judiciously.

He said: “at this stage, the law enjoins me to ascertain whether plaintiffs have a prima facie case or whether or not their action is frivolous.”

He said the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Tema Metropolitan Assembly were the legal authorities to see to the construction and operation of the plant and they both had issued the requisite permits to PFC having thoroughly studied all its proposals.

“Consequently, the ‘fears anticipated by the CSRM, which was presented by Richter Nii Amarfio are not imminent and, therefore, there is no justification for this application,” he said.

The plaintiffs had in their application for the issuance of the writ stated as a basis for their application that PFC had commenced the construction of an offal recycling plant to recycle its own by-products into fish meal without first obtaining the requisite permits.

The applicants had also stated that the waste products would affect the aqua and fauna in the lagoon and affect the very existence of the Chemu Lagoon.

In opposing the application, counsel for the defendants Madam Abena Ayesu contended that the construction was legal because the company had all the requisite permits, including the environmental assessment approved by the EPA and the construction would not be hazardous as was being alleged by the plaintiffs.

She said the plaintiffs’ action was frivolous and that they had no prima facie case as to cause the court to entertain the application. GNA

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