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General News of Friday, 8 August 2008

Source: GNA

Contempt case against IEA, political parties reenlisted

Accra, Aug. 8, GNA - A motion for contempt filed by Mr Thomas Ward-Brew, presidential candidate of Democratic People's Party, against the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) and 13 others, has been put before an Accra Fast Track High Court again.

This was after Mr Ward-Brew had filed a motion for re-enlistment. A Fast Track High Court on July 31 struck out the contempt motion and awarded 600 Ghana cedis cost against the applicants who failed to appear in court.

The 13 respondents are presidential candidates and Chairmen of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC), People's National Convention (PNC) and the Convention People's Party (CPP). Mr Ward-Brew told the Ghana New Agency that the hearing of the motion took place last Wednesday.

The court asked that all the respondents should be served and adjourned the matter to August 14.

In a motion for reenlistment, the applicant stated that confusion was created as a result of the venue of the hearing. Mr Ward-Brew said he was informed that hearing would take place at the High Court 12 adding that, no one informed him about the change of venue.

According to him, he waited in Court 12 for the hearing saying the presiding judge and the court clerks could attest to that. Mr Ward-Brew and Mr Jebby Mensah Tetteh, party chairman of DPP, filed a motion for contempt against the presidential candidates and party chairmen of the four parties for attending the "Presidential Encounter" organised by the the IEA between May and June.

Mr Ward-Brew earlier filed an injunction at the High Court in Accra against the IEA for assisting the four parties. Mr Ward-Brew contended that assistance should be offered to all parties irrespective of their size.

The applicants also contended that funding of the programmes of the parties, which was coming from Institute of Multiparty Democracy, a Dutch-based NGO, was in breach of the Political Parties Law.

In an affidavit in opposition, the IEA maintained at that as a public policy civil society organisation it organised encounters with the presidential candidates to enable the voters to ask them questions to assess their messages. The IEA said it had done nothing to interfere with the motion for interlocutory injunction.

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