General News of Tuesday, 10 September 2013
Source: Daily Guide
Justice Paul Baffoe-Bonnie, one of the nine Supreme Court Justices that sat on the election petition , has finally broken his silence on “wild rumours and concocted stories” being peddled about him, especially about how he ruled on the landmark case.
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie stressed that he ruled on the election petition without any external influence so he was not afraid of anything, thus debunking media reports that he nowadays walks about in the company of scores of armed policemen for the fear of his life.
According to him, people who know him are aware of his upright nature which had guided his judgements and actions throughout his career as a judge, indicating that his conscience told him that he ruled fairly and firmly on the election petition without any favour or inducement.
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie stated that he would always uphold his upright nature, insisting that nothing could let him depart from being honest at all times. “I will never change irrespective of the rumours that people peddle about me,” he said.
He stated emphatically that he was a free man who walked about freely in town without even a single bodyguard since the Supreme Court gave its judgement on the election petition. So those peddling rumours that armed policemen were guarding him now should refrain from that.
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie, speaking exclusively to DAILY GUIDE yesterday, also said there was no iota of truth in reports that he stormed Kumasi last weekend in the company of five armed policemen when his daughter graduated from the KNUST Medical School.
According to him, speculations that he was openly hooted at by some students of KNUST during his daughter’s graduation ceremony was also a hoax, and therefore asked the public to treat the report with the contempt it deserved, stressing,
“I was even accorded a warm welcome by the people present just as the other dignitaries present.”
He was reacting to yesterday’s front page story of DAILY GUIDE with the headline ‘Baffoe Bonnie ‘Missing’ In Kumasi.’ The story indicated that Justice Baffoe-Bonnie arrived in Kumasi for his daughter’s graduation with five armed policemen guarding him.
The report further alleged that he was hooted at the programme by some students when he was introduced by the MC for the event, Solomon Panford, a senior officer at the KNUST.
Though the ‘celebrated’ Supreme Court Justice confirmed that indeed he visited Kumasi for his daughter’s graduation ceremony at the KNUST, he was quick to deny that there were no policemen protecting him, adding, he was also not hooted at.
Setting the records straight, Justice Baffoe-Bonnie indicated that he drove with his wife and children from Accra to Kumasi for the ceremony at the KNUST without even a single bodyguard, wondering why people were peddling wild rumours about him.
According to him, he had done nothing to pose danger to his life, and so did not see the need for him to move about in the company of armed security agents as was being speculated around.
He said he arrived at the auditorium of the Social Sciences Faculty where graduands from the KNUST Medical School were taking the Hippocratic Oath last Saturday morning with his family some minutes before the programme started.
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie flatly debunked speculations that he sneaked into the event venue unnoticed, disclosing that he was even seated in the second row just behind Yaw Osafo Marfo and Dr. Wood who did not notice his presence.
He said the MC for the event was spontaneously mentioning the names of the dignitaries present, so he stood up briefly when he heard his name mentioned, stating categorically that “nobody hooted at me. I am surprised and disappointed about this report.”
He said since the MC for the event was mentioning the names of the dignitaries present in a hurriedly manner, even his wife who was seated by him “did not hear my name mentioned.”
According to him, before he could stand up, the MC had mentioned the name of the next dignitary. He wondered, “He was mentioning the names in a spontaneous manner so when was I hooted at?”
He said when he stood up briefly on his feet his wife even asked why he had done that “and I explained to her that the MC had just mentioned my name. My wife even said she did not hear my name being mentioned.”
The MC, Solomon Panford, had told DAILY GUIDE on Sunday when he was contacted, that he did not see Justice Baffoe-Bonnie at the function.
Mr Panford said that he announced his name but did not see him standing up for applause.
He said his daughter was among the brilliant students who graduated, noting that the young lady attracted wild applause whenever her name was mentioned during the ceremony and he was surprised the media did not capture that but decided to write about him instead.
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie said after the event he walked to a portion at the event venue, where the graduands were taking pictures, and took some memorable pictures with his dear daughter.
According to him, he then had a hearty chat with Dr. Nsiah Asare, ex-KATH CEO and a leading member of the NPP in Kumasi and other people present for sometime before driving away with his family.
He said he saw some journalists present at the event but none of them even approached him for an interview, saying “by their demeanour I realised that they didn’t know who I am.”
Justice Baffoe-Bonnie noted that from KNUST he and his family headed straight to the Royal Park in Kumasi where they had a lunch after which he went to Golden Tulip Kumasi City to lodge.
He emphasised that reports that he could not move about freely lately were a hoax intended to dent his hard earned reputation, and that he always moved about freely without a single bodyguard.