The High Court in Accra has cleared Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the NDC’s North Tongu representative, of all charges of contempt of court and released him from those charges.
The General Secretary of the National Cathedral Board of Trustees, Rev. Victor Kusi Boateng, filed a contempt petition and claimed that the MP had slandered him. The High Court, presided over by Justice Charles Gyamfi Dankwa, dismissed the petition today.
The court subsequently imposed cost in the amount of GHC10,000 in favor of the MP against Rev Boateng after dismissing the contempt application.
After initiating the defamation lawsuit over various accusations made against him over the National Cathedral project, Rev. Boateng issued a citation for contempt against Mr. Ablakwa, alleging that the MP had refused to comply with court papers delivered to him by the court bailiff.
However, the court held that the aforementioned bailiff, Elis Armah, who served the MP with court documents was not a recognized officer of the judicial service in its decision dismissing the contempt application.
The court ruled that such a move contravened the Chief Justice’s order that court papers be delivered by authorized bailiffs of the judicial service.
Once more, the court ruled that MPs exercising parliamentary duties could not be served with court documents.
The court ruled that the petitioner was required to determine whether Mr. Ablakwa was carrying out legislative duties on the day the process was served upon him and, if so, to affect the proper process of service.
Justice Dankwa further dismissed the application on the grounds that the affidavits submitted by Rev. Boateng and the aforementioned bailiff, who filed the motion, were inconsistent.
In contrast to the supposed bailiff’s assertion that the MP put the court documents in his car and the lawmaker threw them away, Rev. Boateng asserted that the MP placed the documents at his side and kicked them.
“The application for contempt is thrown out as the applicant could not prove his case beyond reasonable doubt,” Justice Dankwa held.
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