The notion of judicial independence is undermined by selectivities of the judiciary in quickly hearing certain cases and delaying others. This makes it difficult for us to help them assert their independence.
Sometimes, the judiciary is very swift on matters that aren’t even about life and death. At other times too, they appear unwilling and lackadaisical in acting in matters that require timeliness.
The examples are too many! When the Police want to frustrate harmless demonstrators who seek to exercise their rights peacefully, they are easily granted injunctions in a very timely manner. Let’s see how swiftly the Gyakye-Quayeson matter was dealt with and how the criminal aspect of his case is being handled on daily basis.
But look at the date the judiciary has given to hear the case brought before it by the four political parties against the Electoral Commission. By the time the matter is heard, the Electoral Commission would have completed what the parties were seeking to halt, pending the hearing of the matter. See how the NAM 1 Case that is about human life and blood has been dragged in court, almost in perpetuity. See how and when judgement in the Domlevo case was given at a time when it was completely useless to the man.
The Constitution can cloth judges with independence and some of us can also speak up against acts that undermine the autonomy of the judiciary. Indeed, as a society, we must do all we can to keep the sanctity and respect for such crucial organ of government like the judiciary. But judges themselves also have a responsibility to deliberately act in a manner that guards against the derogatory, but sometimes deserving perception of their lack of total commitment, fairness, responsiveness and independence.
PAV Ansah Street
Suro Nipa House
Behind Old Post Office