Verdict in the case in which suspended New Patriotic Party (NPP) Chairman Paul Afoko, is seeking to overturn the party’s decision, is expected to be given on Monday, August 15.
This follows the submission of written addresses by lawyers representing both parties in the case.
However, the Human Rights Court, presided over by Justice Anthony Yeboah, indicated yesterday that the judgement date could be brought forward if he ‘finishes’ his judgement ahead of time.
“We may have to abridge the date if I am able to finish writing my judgement ahead of time; and will get the registrar to serve you hearing notices,” he said.
Mr. Afoko has sued the NPP and its acting National Chairman, Freddie Blay – who doubles as the 1st National Vice Chairman of the party – after he (Afoko) had been suspended indefinitely in October last year.
He was in court in the company of senior police officers, who provided protection for him apart from the hordes of national security operatives.
The party’s Disciplinary Committee (DC) had recommended his suspension from the NPP following a petition by two members of the party; and Mr Afoko wants the court to order his reinstatement because he claims that the party’s action was unconstitutional.
Mr. Afoko, among other things, is contesting the issue of whether Gifty Eugenia Kusi, Member of Parliament (MP) for Tarkwa Nsuaem, was validly appointed to the National Disciplinary Committee, which recommended his suspension to the National Executive Council (NEC).
A similar case instituted by Sammy Crabbe, the suspended 2nd Vice Chairman, was thrown out for lacking merit.
Witnesses In the case
During the entire trial, Mr Afoko had listed two people as the witnesses he was going to rely on.
The witnesses included his lawyer in the initial stages of the case, Martin Kpebu and Kwabena Agyei Agyepong – who has also been suspended by the party.
However, Mr. Agyepong chickened out of the case and this was confirmed by Mr. Afoko’s lawyer on June 16 when he (Agyepong) was to be called to testify.
“You will realize that we have Mr. Kwabena Agyepong as part of the witnesses to be called by the plaintiff, but he is unavailable so that will be the end of the plaintiff’s case,” Mr. Buaben told the court.
The NPP, on the other hand, brought two witnesses – the party’s Disciplinary Committee Chairman, Rt Rev. Samuel Asante Antwi, a former Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church, Ghana and Peter Mac Manu, former NPP Chairman – to testify in the case.
Mr. Afoko was not in court when the case was called at exactly 9:04 am yesterday, but he was represented by Daniel Dugan, a former deputy minister during the previous Kufuor administration.
Godfred Yeboah-Dame, counsel for both the NPP and Freddie Blay, was present in court while Mr. Afoko’s lawyer, Osafo Buaben, was represented by Reynolds Twumasi.
Since the case commenced, fully armed police officers reportedly drawn from the Monitors Unit of the Ghana Police Service have been escorting Mr. Afoko to court.
Source: Daily Guide/Ghana