Judges must uphold rule of law - Brobbey
Justice Stephen Allan Brobbey, a retired Justice of the Supreme Court, on Friday, urged the Judiciary to continue to uphold the rule of law irrespective of the threats to their lives.
He said judges are appointed to serve the society and as such should be encouraged to render that service effectively and meaningfully for the good of the society.
Justice Brobbey said this during a lecture at the 31st Anniversary of the Martyrs Day – Bench, Bar, Faculty Lecture, organized by the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) in Accra.
The lecture, which is on the theme: “The role of lawyers and judges in sustaining the rule of law”, forms part of activities to mark this year’s Martyrs Day celebration.
Justice Brobbey said judges should be bold to give their judgement and should not be deterred by threats from any quarter.
He said the period when some people thought they had power on their side and after losing a case could resort to brute force was long over.
He said if a litigant loses a case, the answer is not to kill or harm an opponent but rather to allow the law to be applied to resolve the issue.
Justice Brobbey said people who take delight in criticising judges should note that in the work of judges, every case always ends up displeasing the losing side.
He said if every time an unsavoury judgement was given judges were killed, it would mean that every time a case was concluded the nation would lose one human being.
He said if that were the case, the moment a person becomes a judge, he or she must make his will and say goodbye to his people from the day he starts work on the Bench.
Justice Brobbey said those who killed the three High Court judges have never been able to articulate one legitimate reason why the judges had to die.
He said the perpetrators of the murder cannot convince anybody that the three judges had to die because they did their work, adding that the three judges died for no reason.
He said the death of the three judges have also firmly established the futility in the belief that to kill or threaten judges would cow them into towing the lines of the government of the day.
Professor Kwame Frempong, immediate past dean, Law Faculty of GIMPA, who spoke on the topic: “Sustaining rule of law in Ghana: role of Lawyers and Academic”, urged the GBA to be at the forefront in maintaining rule of law in the country.
He said it is the role of lawyers to explain to their clients that, in every litigation, one side is bound to win or lose the case.
He said the losing side must be advised not to resort to threatening opponents and judges but resolve to use the law to address their concerns.
Professor Frempong said the government of the day must also take action against people who threaten judges as they are only performing their legitimate duties under the law.
He said the benefits of the rule of law to the country far outweighed the chaos, anarchy and confusion that would have existed.