Chief Justice, Others Eulogise Akoto Ampaw


Ghanaians from various parts of the country last Wednesday congregated at the National Theatre to eulogise the late Akoto Ampaw, who died on October 20, 2023.

It was a solemn but reflective moment when friends, families, and work colleagues shared testimonies of his academic, political as well as his contribution to the legal regime after decades of practice as a human rights lawyer.

The late Akoto Ampaw, aged 73, popularly known as ‘Sheey Sheey’, beyond his career  as  a notable  lawyer  is  also known  for  his activism  during his student days  as well as  promoting  social justice, human rights, democracy and freedom.

He was described as a man with phenomenally critical intellectual capacity to analyse nearly every kind of complex issue, while his political discussions and acute analysis always demanded equally critical attention even if one disagreed with him.

Chief Justice Gertrude Torkornoo, who shared memories of her encounter with the late Akoto Ampaw as a practicing lawyer, described him as a man whose heart was “filled with good and best and the heart of the community who brought feeling, life and conscience into a group and yet may not be seen much.”

According to her, his legal acumen in the courtroom was impeccable, well-researched, well-articulated and relevant with absolute integrity to be relied on.

She said Sheey Sheey impacted social thinking, social conscience, and social dynamism by his sheer intellectual exertions and contributions that were quietly made but effectively sold.

The service was also interspersed with dance performances by the National Dance Company, songs by the Winneba Youth Choir and spoken word by Nana Asaase, while photos of his work were also shown to the gathering in his memory.

Daughter of the late Akoto Ampaw, Fatiya Nkrumah, also said her father, who embodied strength and discipline with boundless compassion and workaholic life, still found time to celebrate with the family.

Prof. Kwame Karikari of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) said Sheey Sheey’s modesty and simplicity in life could disarm pompous people who encountered him in professional and other formal circumstances especially, the opulence borne of corruption in public life.

Executive Director of Star Ghana Foundation, Alhaji Ibrahim Tanko, in a tribute, said the day was important for Ghanaians to reflect on the profound impact of Akoto Ampaw’s life on people and the broader landscape of justice and human rights in Ghana.

Dr. Kwabena Nyarko Otoo, on behalf the Trades Union Congress (TUC), also described him as a true comrade who offered invaluable pro bono services while encouraging them to resolve disputes out of court.

Present at the service include member of the Council of State, Sam Okudzeto, former Chief Justice, Gloria Akuffo, former CHRAJ Boss, Emile Short, Prof. Takyiwaa Manuh, Prof. Gyimah Boadi, Prof. Akilakpa Sawyerr  among several  others.


By Ebenezer K. Amponsah