Rev. Victor Kusi Boateng, Secretary to the Board of Trustees of the National Cathedral, has dragged Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, to court for contempt of court and is urging the court to commit the MP to prison.
The plaintiff is asking the court to commit the MP to Prison for treating “court processes with disdain and disrespect” when he openly threw a court process to the floor and also kicked it with his foot after he was served with the processes by a court bailiff.
Rev. Kusi on February 1, 2023, secured an interim injunction prohibiting Mr. Ablakwa from making further public disclosure of private document, correspondence, communication and property belonging to the applicant.”
The MP had in the past weeks been challenging what he called the double identity of Rev. Kusi Boateng under the names Kwabena Adu Gyamfi and Victor Kusi Boateng.
Mr. Ablakwa, on Monday, January 16, petitioned the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to probe the GH₵2.6 million paid to JNS Talent, a company owned by the Secretary of the National Cathedral Board, Victor Kusi Boateng under a different identity.
On February 3, 2022, a bailiff of the court attempted to serve the interim injunction on Mr. Ablakwa at the premises of the Metro TV in Accra where he had appeared on the ‘Good Morning Ghana’ show.
He was captured in a video which has gone viral refusing to be served and the plaintiff in the contempt application indicates that the MP had claimed that he would not accept service because he was on his way to Parliament.
But the Bailiff who was not satisfied with the MP’s excuse proceeded to serve Mr. Ablakwa by leaving the court process as close as possible to the MP because Parliament was on recess, an act the MP did not take kindly to.
Mr. Ablakwa was captured in a video throwing the court proceedings to the floor and later kicking it twice with his right foot in a manner which the plaintiff describes as gross disrespect to the court official and the jurisdiction of the court.
Rev. Kusi Boateng avers that the “immunities available to Members of Parliament from being served personally with court processes can only be invoked when that member of Parliament is either on his way to or way from Parliament proceedings or activities; an immunity which the Respondent (Mr. Ablakwa) could not have invoked on 3 February, 2023, because the Parliament of Ghana was on recess at that time.”
The writ signed by Boby Banson of Robert Smith Law Group, further states that the MP later took to his Facebook page where he indicated that he was aware the person he was dealing with was indeed an officer of the High Court and that the processes that the person attempted to serve on him were documents emanating from the Registry of the High Court.
The plaintiff avers that “the actions of the respondent have brought the administration of justice and the authority of the law as well as this honourable court into disrepute and same ought to be punished by this Honourable Court by committal to prison for contempt.”
He adds that the court has the power to commit the MP to prison for his conduct to protect the whole administration of justice and serve as deterrent to others. The case is scheduled for February 21, 2023.
BY Gibril Abdul Razak