OSP Goes To Supreme Court Over Cecilia Dapaah

Kissi Agyebeng


The Special Prosecutor has filed a certiorari application at the Supreme Court challenging the decision of an Accra High Court to abridging the hearing date of his motion seeking confirmation of seizure and freezing of the assets and bank accounts of former Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Abena Dapaah.

He is seeking an order by the apex court quashing the October 11, 2023 decision of the High Court to bring the hearing of the application forward to October 12 rather than the October 18, 2023 return date.

Dr. Isidore Tuffour, a lawyer from the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP), yesterday told the court that the decision to abridge the time denied the Office the opportunity to file a supplementary affidavit in support of the  motion which they had sought leave to file.

The OSP has, as a result, filed another application urging the court to stay its proceedings pending the determination of the certiorari by the Supreme Court.


There was confusion before the trial court yesterday due to a miscommunication about the pendency or otherwise of a petition the Special Prosecutor had sent to the Chief Justice requesting her to remove Justice Edward Twum from the ongoing case and all other cases being prosecuted by the OSP.

Victoria Barth, counsel for Madam Dapaah, had sought clarity from the court as to the state of the petition since Dr. Tuffour did not say anything about it when he took his turn to address the court.

“I have been informed that the petition has been withdrawn,” Justice Twum responded.

Ms. Barth then went on to accuse the OSP of deliberately trying to “delay or flee the hearing of his own application, which is causing injury to the respondents and infringing upon the first respondent’s (Madam Dapaah’s) economic right.”

She said as with the OSP’s previous processes belatedly filed, they were not served with the latest applications, but she was only allowed to glance through them before they were taken back by the OSP’s lawyer.

“We have not been served with these late applications, and as I speak, I do not know the return date of the stay of proceedings application,” she added.

Dr. Tuffuor, in response, took exception to what he described as “numerous comments and assumptions that have been pushed before the court by the respondent to clearly attack the person of the Special Prosecutor and also to attack the integrity of the applicant (OSP).

“The facts put before this court this morning are largely unfounded, a clear attempt to stoke prejudice against the applicant in respect of this motion for confirmation,” he added.

All these lasted for about two hours, and the court which was under the impression that the petition had been withdrawn, adjourned the case to October 25, 2023, which is return date for the application for stay of proceedings.

Criminal Case

The court then mentioned the criminal case in which Madam Dapaah is accused of failing to comply with a request by the OSP to declare her property and income.

Her lawyer had objected to the court taking Madam Dapaah’s plea on ground that the offence does not fall within the OSP Act, and that the OSP was mandated to seek the express authorisation of the Attorney General to prosecute such cases.

Few minutes into the proceeding, Dr. Isidore informed the court that his attention had been drawn to the fact the OSP’s petition to the Chief Justice had not been withdrawn.

Justice Twum subsequently called the parties in the case into his chambers, and when they returned he indicated that the court had been informed that the OSP’s petition to the Chief Justice has not been officially withdrawn and in view of that he was further adjourning the case indefinitely to await a direction from the Chief Justice.

By Gibril Abdul Razak