A Senior Staffer at the seat of government Jubilee House has apologized to President Akufo-Addo for instigating a major publication to “preempt” the President’s decision to announce the next Chief Justice of the Republic this week.
President Akufo-Addo is reportedly displeased about the Publications which the President said was an attempt by some persons to “force his hand” to choose their preferred candidate for CJ, Justice Gertrude Torkornoo.
In February, the President is said to have told trusted aides that he was strongly considering two names – Gertrude Torkornoo and Emmanuel Yonny Kulendi as a replacement for the retiring Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah. Sources said on top of the President’s list and preference is Justice Emmanuel Yonny Kulendi.
A day or two before the submission of the final name to Cabinet and Council of State for deliberations however, a Senior Staffer who is a lawyer and related to the President allegedly instigated a major publication to suggest President Akufo-Addo had “penciled” and chosen a name submitted for consideration when that was not the case.
The Staffer has since owned up and apologized to the President for the “indiscretion”.
This development is said to have further weakened the chances of Justice Gertrude Torkornoo as against Justice Yonny Kulendi who is considered to be Akufo-Addo’s personal choice and the NPP Party’s choice.
While Justice GertrudeTorkornoo may still be considered, clear indications are that President Akufo-Addo is most likely to name Justice Kulendi as the next Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana, according to credible sources.
Discussions deep inside the corridors of decision-making show key political figures within the party and government support and respect President Akufo-Addo’s choice of Justice Kulendi, who was appointed to the apex court by Akufo-Addo only a year after Justice Torkornoo.
While widely acknowledged for his principled private practice and delivering his mandate on the Supreme Court without partiality since ascending the highest bench, some persons in the NPP backing President Akufo-Addo’s choice of Kulendi highlight his judgment in the Justice Abdulai Case and the Assin North MP’s injunction case which were critical to the passage of E-levy and other key Akufo-Addo agenda in parliament.
Justice Emmanuel Yoni Kulendi retains an advantage over all others due to the level of support he has within and outside the party, on the bench and in the entire judicial service due to his years of active legal work — both private and public — spanning almost three decades with landmark legal achievements.
Should Akufo-Addo go with Kulendi, Akufo-Addo will make history as the Ghanaian President who gave the entire three Northern Regions their first Chief Justice since independence.