Feature Article of Monday, 14 January 2013
Columnist: Sam, Leo R.
Self-Check Report Cards !!!
Can True Democracy Prevail Without Honest Professional Lawyers ?
My Answer: Definitely No. What is your Answer ?
By Leo R. Sam
For Ghana to develop to the level where an ordinary citizen can concentrate on his/her real job, work hard everyday and get paid reasonable living salaries and wages for PROCUCTIVE work, to enable her/him to provide:
1. Food for herself/himself and children
2. Shelter for himself/herself and children
3. Clothing for herself/himself and children
4. Save a little bit for the education of the Children,
it is necessary to have true " RULE OF LAW" firmly established.
I am strongly of the opinion that: A JUSTICE SYSTEM IN WHICH THE PEOPLE HAVE LOST CONFIDENCE is worse than " THE ABSENCE OF RULE OF LAW"
A justice system in which the people have lost confidence only APPREARS to be administering justice, whereas in FACT it is favoring crooks to go on with their corrupt nation-wrecking activities:
1. Stealing state funds and property with impunity using "So-called Legal means"
2, Forming Fraudulent Questionable Companies and Businesses to be awarded
lucrative contracts, which are truly of no benefit to the State. Only the unnamed
owners of the companies amass millions of dollars from the state. Of course the
money obtained from these contracts are kept overseas to purchase luxury items,
when ordinary citizens at home do not have access to simple decent hygienic toilet
3. Creating conditions, which allow them to collect "JUDGEMENT DEBTS" ,
contract KICKBACKS and all types of BROWN ENVELOPE exchange activities.
The U.N.D.P. ( United Nations Development Programme ) should be recognized as an EXCELLENT program for supporting the survey, which indicated that:
!. " Ghanaians are losing confidence in the Court System" ( Ghanaweb News of
Wednesday, 19 Dec.2012) ,
2. " 90% majority of the respondents also rated the system as CORRUPT "
3. 70% of the above figure claimed to have paid bribes to officials in the justice sector
for services rendered "
One does not need to be a rocket scientist to detect that there is something basically wrong with our judiciary system.
I lost confidence in the system long ago. I refrained from making accusations because as soon as one expresses his/her opinion, one is asked:
" PROVIDE THE EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT THE CLAIM "
Every child knows that Corrupt "Bribe Givers" and Corrupt "Bribe Takers" will NEVER admit that they have been involved in the alleged actions. Whistle blowers are made to look like liars. In some cases they are portrayed as CRAZY persons. High level officials do not hesitate to take all steps to destroy the REPUTATION of honest whistle blowers. Personal attacks and threats are launched.
"Provide the Evidence" is just a convenient and effective technique to get people to SHUT UP. Those who persist are often threatened with Court Action.
People are forced to keep quiet over QUESTIONABLE COURT JUDGEMENTS because of another threat"
"CONTEMPT OF COURT CHARGES"
The only action, which may RECTIFY the situation is a thorough and CRITICAL SELF-EXANINATION by individual Judges, Magistrates and Lawyers. These individuals MUST willingly decide on their own to examine themselves.
Before filling this Self Check Report Card, one must take the following OATH :
"On my honour I promise to be completely truthful. No other person on this particular planet ( EARTH ) will ever see this report card and so there is no reason to lie to myself. Rationalization will have no place while filling this report card. SO HELP ME GOD"
The following questions, should be answered TRUTHFULLY: It may be better to write down your answers so that you have the time to think about them carefully. It is important to take this exercise seriously. " An Unexamined Professional Life is Not Worth Living":
1. What motivated me to enter the Law Profession ?
2. Am I in the Law Profession just to become rich at ALL COST ?
3. Do I directly or indirectly contribute to the dysfunctional mechanisms in our
Judiciary system ?
4. Am I holding my present position purely on merit ?
5. Am I holding my present position due to my political connections ?
6. If my position is through political affiliation, do I use my position to help free
criminals in my favourite political party based on technical considerations,
even when they should be obviously convicted ?
7. Do I sincerely believe in the RULE OF LAW or just use the expression whenever it
Is convenient ?
The above are "HARDLINE" and "HARDTALK" questions but you must answer them truthfully since no one will ever see this report card.
Phillip Slayton, a top legal scholar and also an ex-Bay Street :Lawyer has exposed the corruption in his own profession, In an exclusive interview ( Refer MACLEANS MAGAZINE - VOLUME 120 NUMBER 30, AUGUST6, 2007 -- www.macleans.ca ) he made the following statements:
(a). "If you are taught ( in Law School ) how to MANIPULATE rules, you lose respect for them and that leads to a kind of arrogance: I am BIGGER than the rule "
(b). "Every lawyer is going to go into the office today and commit fraud"
( c ) There is always a tendency to pad bills, and it is because of the pressure lawyers are under to generate revenue for their firms.
8 . Do I agree to some extent with Phillip Slayton ?
9 . Do I believe that sometimes Law Suits can be manipulated to exonerate guilty people
on so-called technical grounds ?
10 Have I ever helped to exonerated a person, who has really broken the law ?
11. Can I hold myself to a higher moral and ethical standard than the legal system
WHAT IS ONE EXPECTED TO DO WITH THIS SELF-CHECK REPORT CARD ?
It is suggested that once you have diligently completed filling the Self Check Report Card, you sincerely MEDITATE and REFLECT over your answers for at least one week. Then appoint a "PERSONAL TRUTH AND RECONCILLIATION COMMISSION". The only member on this commission should be your OWN CONSCIENCE.
Hopefully, your conscience will tell you the right steps to take:
In a country, where true "RULE OF LAW" exists, most citizens work hard and enjoy the fruits of their labour. Time is not wasted to go around making contacts to get the basic necessities of life.
In a country where fake "RULE OF LAW" exists, most people do not get involved in hard productive work. They waste time finding easy and dubious ways of making money without contributing anything positive towards the progress of the community. They become liabilities to the society instead of being assets.
For Ghana to be successful, at least 51% of our Judges, Magistrates and Lawyer must be involved in working towards true "RULE OF LAW" level.
The fact that "Ghanaians Are Losing Confidence In The Court System" suggests that a high proportion of our legal personnel are working at the fake "RULE OF LAW" level.
Former Gentle and well respected Heads of State have been forced to make some remarks after some court verdicts:
The Late Professor Kofi Abrefa Busia retorted: "NO COURT !!! NO OURT !!"
The Late Professor John Fifi Atta-Mills simply stated " I AM FRUSTRATED"
May the Good Lord guide AT LEAST 51 % of our Lawyers to choose to work on the true "RULE OF LAW" level.
GOD BLESS GHANA !!!