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Assin North MP suffers another blow as Supreme Court throws out application

James Gyakye Quayson Assin North NDC

Court orders substituted service on Assin North MP

Lawyer for Gyekye Quayson objects to court processes served on his client

Plaintiff asks court to bar embattled MP from conducting parliamentary duties

An application filed by the embattled Member of Parliament for Assin North James Gyekye Quaayson at the Supreme Court has been dismissed in a unanimous decision.

According to a Joynews report, the court deemed the MP’s application as lacking merit.

The MP, in a review application, had asked the Apex court to set aside an earlier ruling in which the court ordered Mr Quayson to file his defence in a case that seeks to stop him from holding himself as a member of the legislature.

On March 8, 2022, the Supreme Court ruled that the said case had sufficiently been brought to the attention of the MP and thus ordered him to go ahead and file his defence.

This came after the Supreme Court in February 2022 ordered that processes be brought to the attention of the MP through substituted service, including newspaper publications.

The MP was also to be served through a notice posting on the wall of the Supreme Court in Accra, the High Court in Cape Coast and at his residence.

A private citizen, Michael Ankomah Nimfah, in a suit filed against the MP, notified the court through his lawyers that attempts to serve court documents on Mr Quayson had proved futile.

In July 2021, a Cape Coast High Court delivered a judgment in which it declared the 2020 Assin North Parliamentary elections as null and void.

The court upheld the prayer of a plaintiff that Mr Quayson, at the time of filing his nomination for the elections in which he was declared winner, owed allegiance to another country aside from Ghana, contrary to provisions of the constitution.

The court ordered a rerun of the election, but Mr Quayson has since been battling to get the decision of the court set aside in what has now turned out to involve multiple cases being fought in different courts on the matter.

Michael Nimfah, through his lawyers, has asked for Mr Quayson to be restrained from performing any parliamentary duties until a decision by a Court of Appeal is made on the Cape Coast High Court’s ruling.

At a previous sitting of the Supreme Court, lead counsel for the Assin North MP, Tsatsu Tsikata, told the court that the order of substituted service asked to be served on his client had not been served properly.

He noted that a publication of the court processes in the Daily Graphic only contained the order of the court and the date for hearing and not the entire process.

However, the lawyer for Nimfah, Frank Davies, informed the court that its order in respect of the Daily Graphic publication could not mean the MP has not been made aware of the court processes.

The court after hearing arguments from the counsels, including the Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, declined Mr Tiskata’s objection in a unanimous decision.

“The essence of substituted service is to bring to the attention of a party of the pendency of the suit. This court does not expect all processes to be published. Again the letter by Mr Teriwajah speaks for itself. We, therefore, dismiss the preliminary objection.

“On the issue of whether this case is ripe for hearing, this court, in a majority decision of 6-1 with Justice Kulendi dissenting, holds that the first accused was duly served as of February 28 2022. The cause is adjourned to March 16 2022, for hearing. The first defendant is to file all processes on or before March 16”, President of the Panel Justice Dotse ruled.

Following various motions by Lawyer Tsatsu Tsikata to support his application and get the court to reverse its March 8 decision, the court, in a ruling read on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, described the application by the Assin North MP as being without merit.

“The application lacks merit and is accordingly dismissed”, Justice Dotse, reading the ruling of the court said.

The court panel was made up of Justices Jones Dotse, Agnes Dordzie, Nene Amegatcher, Prof Ashie Kotey, Mariama Owusu, Gertrude Torkonoo, Clemence Honyenuga, Prof Henrietta Mensah Bonsu and Emmanuel Y. Kulendi.

Prof Ashie Kotey and Justice Clemence Honyenuga also joined the seven members who heard the original application in hearing the review application.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

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