GH¢52m Judgment Debt: Martin Amidu drags A-G, Woyome et al to court
The former A-G who hitherto relied on series of press statements to fight his case, has now dragged his successor, Dr. Benjamin Kunbuor, Waterville Holdings (BVI) Limited, Austro- Invest Management Limited and Mr. Woyome to the Supreme Court to seek some reliefs.
Mr. Amidu is seeking a declaration that the conduct of President Mills implying in an interview with Radio Gold on 23rd December 2011 that the two international Business Agreements of 26th April 2006 between the Republic of Ghana and Waterville Holdings (BVI) Limited incidental to it created liabilities for the Republic of Ghana for which the Government of Ghana had to pay Mr. Woyome judgment debts are inconsistent with and in contravention of Article 181 of the 1992 Constitution and undermine efforts to defend the Constitution.
He argued that on a true and proper interpretation of Article 181(3), (4), (5), and (6) and the spirit of the 1992 Constitution, the Republic of Ghana cannot incur liability for any foreign or international loan or expenses incidental to such foreign or international loan transactions without Parliamentary approval of the transaction for it to be operative and binding on the Republic of Ghana.
In a writ to invoke the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, as enshrined in the Constitution, Mr. Amidu explained that his action was purely based on public interest -pursuant to Articles 2 and 130 (1) and 181 of the 1992 Constitution and not a personal action for which the requirement of a “controversy” or “dispute” or “personal interest” is required to ground a cause of action.
On this grounds he prayed the court to make a declaration that the manner in which the AG paid sums of money in Euros to Waterville in purported pursuance of claims arising out of the said two agreements each dated 26h April 2006 is inconsistent with and in contravention of the letter and spirit of the 1992 Constitution, “particularly Article 181(5) thereof and is each accordingly null, void, and without effect whatsoever”.
Mr. Amidu contested the AG’s decision to order the payment of claims demanded by Waterville and Austro- Invest premised upon a purported foreign or international financial engineering agreement arising out of the two agreements of 26th April 2006 and/or any other international Business Agreement with the Government of Ghana which were never laid before or approved by Parliament, saying that it was inconsistent with and in contravention of the letter and spirit of the Constitution, particularly Articles 181(3), (4), (5), and (6) of the 1992 Constitution thereof and are according null, void and without effect whatsoever.
He also sought from the court, an order directed at Mr. Woyome, Waterville and Austro- Invest to refund to the Republic of Ghana all sums of money paid to them severally or jointly upon or as a result of the unconstitutional conduct of the AG in purported pursuance of the two inoperative agreements of 26th April 2006 or “nay other unconstitutional agreement as having been made and received by them in violation of Article 181 of the Constitution”.
The former AG also took on the High Court which purportedly assumed jurisdiction in an action commenced by Mr. Woyome on 19th April 2010 in Suit No. RPC/152/10 against the State, claiming damages for breach of contract in an international business transaction contrary to Article 181 of the 1992 Constitution and entered judgment in default of defence against the AG.
He contended that in spite of the fact that Mr Woyome and Austro-Invest did not have any locus standi or cause of action to have commenced an action in the High court against the State, the then AG (Madam Betty Mould Iddrisu), stood by and also the court upon glaring facts entered a default judgement against the Republic of Ghana of the two (Mr Woyome and Austro-Invest) without any jurisdiction whatsoever.
He argued that the court acted without jurisdiction, therefore seeking a declaration that “those proceedings and others consequent thereupon of the said High Court are null, void, and without effect whatsoever”.
He recalled that when almost all the foregoing matters came to his attention on 23rd December 2011 as the then the Attorney-General, he made every effort in his official capacity including amending a pending suit at the High Court to ensure compliance with the provisions of 181 of the Constitution but could not achieve his objective before the he vacated the office on 19th January 2012.
He argued that by virtue of the actions and conduct of each of Mr. Woyome , Waterville and others persons joined in the suit, resources have been and are being misappropriated and misapplied without any constitutional authority whatsoever.
He stated that if the Supreme Court did not intervene to restore compliance with the provisions of the Constitution as pleaded, the defendants will continue to engage in their unconstitutional conduct of demanding and paying interests and other cost and cause the Republic of Ghana further unauthorized loss of resources.