Accra Nov. 13, GNA – Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Dr Omane Boamah, have filed a motion on notice seeking a review of the decision of the Supreme Court (SC) on the leasing of a state bungalow offered to Mr. Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, a former Minister of State.
Mr Ablakwa and Dr Boamah both Deputy Ministers noted that the SC made a fundamental error in the interpretation and enforcement of Article 20 (5) and (6) in relation to state or public property.
They contended that the SC’s decision was a miscarriage of justice and that it should look at the matter again by way of a review.
According to the two they had made some discovery of new evidence which after the exercise of due diligence was not within their (applicants) knowledge or could not be produced by them at the time when the decision was rendered.
The SC on May 22, this year in their 6-3 majority decision ruled that Mr. Ablakwa and Dr Boamah, the plaintiffs had failed to lead evidence to the effect that the allocation of the bungalow to Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey smacked of cronyism, arbitrary, capricious, discriminatory and a gross abuse of the discretionary power vested in a public officer under the country’s constitution.
According to the majority opinion, the Supreme Court is a court of law, equity and justice governed by rules and regulations.
“Our rules mandate that people who invite the court to condemn others for wrong doing to be in the position to justify what they call on the court to do”.
In response, Mr. Obetsebi Lamptey however contended that the application did not disclose the exceptional circumstances for review adding no error in the interpretation of the Article 20 (5) and (6).
He is therefore praying the court to dismiss the motion on notice for review.
Mr. Ablakwa and Dr. Boamah in 2008 sued the Attorney General and Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey over the allocation of Bungalow No 2 Mungo Street at the Ridge Residential Area in Accra to the latter, which he occupied at the time.
They contended that Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey’s action contravenes Articles 20 (5) and 20 (6) and smacked of cronyism and gross abuse of discretional powers of a public officer, and, thus, questioned the legitimacy of the sale, disposal or transfer of any government or public property to Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey.
In the substantive action, the Deputy Ministers are also praying the court to order that any such direction for the disposal, sale or outright transfer of the said property in dispute or any other public land to Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey was illegal and unconstitutional.
The applicants were seeking a declaration that by virtue of Articles 20(5), 23, 257, 258, 265, 284 and 296 of the 1992 Constitution, the government was obliged to retain and continue to use, in the public interest, the property in dispute.
They were further seeking a declaration that the purported sale of the said government bungalow, located at St Mungo Street, Ridge, Accra, by the previous government to Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey was in utter contravention of Articles 20(5), 23, 257, 258, 265, 284 and 296 of the 1992 Constitution.