By Joyce Danso, GNA
Accra, Oct. 3, GNA - The Association of Magistrates and Judges of Ghana (AMJG) on Wednesday raised concerns about an increasing insecurity in their homes and the courtrooms.
According to the association, some members sometimes had to hire personnel security contrary to the norm of state catering for their safety.
“Court houses are still without security and most of our residential facilities are also without adequate security,” Mr Justice Victor Ofoe, President of AMJG said this at the opening of the Association’s 38th Annual General Meeting in Accra.
The two day ceremony is on the theme: “The Independence of the Judiciary-The way forward”.
Justice Ofoe recounted that last year some judges’ security and safety was threatened by some misguided elements of the society and in some instances, some judges had their homes were broken into.
“The authorities should know that our work will seriously be undermined if this insecurity continues. When a judge senses a state of security in his/her courtroom because of a high profile case; do we expect him to be a judge that he/she has sworn to be where there are all indications that his/her safety is not assured? AMJG President quizzed.
He said their boldness would not send them on a senseless martyr mission to confront hooligans; adding that the security apparatus should have known that they would be on the court precincts.
Mr Justice Ofoe expressed displeasure about the way the judiciary continuously struggle financially because it was considered as another public institution.
According to him, all allowances of the judiciary were in arrears adding, “Our quarterly entitlement even though meagre, is not being released to us”.
He appealed to the Chief Justice that the issue of variation in their monthly earnings stressing that they would test the constitutional provision of Article 125 (5).
Mr Justice Ofoe also urged the Chief Justice to ensure that judges were well represented on the Judicial Council so they could fight for the independence of the judiciary.
He called for better accommodation for members operating in the hinterlands as well as vehicles for some career Magistrates.
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