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General News of Monday, 28 June 2021


I'll repeal prosecutorial immunity for ex-presidents if I had power - Captain Smart

Captain Smart Captain Smart

• No ex-president should be immune from prosecution according to TV personality Captain Smart

• He says if he ever rose to become president, it is one of the first constitutional provisions he will repeal

• But what exactly do the laws of Ghana say about prosecutorial immunity to former leaders?

Onua TV show host Captain Smart has said if he ever became president, one of the first actions he will take will be to repeal a law that grants former presidents immunity from prosecution.

According to him, that portion of the law was needless because leaders needed to be held accountable for actions they undertake in and out of office.

GhanaWeb monitored comments he made on his online channel, Smart TV, on Friday (June 25).

He said: "If I become president today, do you know the first aspect of the constitution I will change? Where it says a former president cannot be prosecuted.

"If I become president today with a sensible Attorney General, that is the first thing that must be repealed, so that even myself as Head of State, if I misbehave ... (there will be consequences)."

What does the constitution say?

Chapter 8 of the 1992 Constitution, part 1 section 57, clauses 5 and 6 address the issue of prosecution as relates to sitting and former presidents.

It reads: "5. The President shall not, while in office as President, be personally liable to any civil or criminal proceedings in court.

"6. Civil or criminal proceedings may be instituted against a person within three years after his ceasing to be President, in respect of anything done or omitted to be done by him in his personal capacity before or during his term of office notwithstanding any period of limitation except where the proceedings had been legally barred before he assumed the office of President."

Point six spells out that former presidents can be sued given that a condition of having left office three years prior is met.

There have been calls previously for some of these provisions with respect to full or partial prosecutorial immunity to be lifted in respect of especially members of the executive and the legislature.