24 June, 2017
The Supreme Court presided over by newly sworn-in Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo on Thursday, June 22, declared that it is unconstitutional for the two ex-detainees to be allowed into the country without Parliament's prior approval. They had been cleared for release in 2009, but the United States won't send Guantanamo prisoners to Yemen because of instability there and officials had to find another country to accept them.
The Minority Leader, however, would not give a definite answer to whether the Minority would support the ratification of the agreement if the executive sent it to Parliament.
Meanwhile, private legal practitioner, Kojo Anan Ankomah, is of the view that former President Mahama breached the constitution by refusing to seek parliamentary approval before agreeing to host the two ex-Guantanamo Bay detainees.
The two Yemenis were the first Guantanamo prisoners resettled in sub-Saharan Africa.
Their presence of the former terror suspects in Ghana generated huge public outcry with the then opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) launching a blistering attack on then President Mahama for jeopardising the security of Ghanaians by admitting the two.
To him, the Nana Addo government shouldn't even wait for Parliament to decide the fate of the detainees but do the needful.
"There is no doubt that such an arrangement can not be made without parliamentary ratification, " it said.
But he disagrees, saying, "all treaties, AGREEMENTS and conventions" entered into/executed by the President (ostensibly on Ghana's behalf) will require parliamentary ratification before they will have binding effect on Ghana.
In a 6-1 majority decision, it held that the agreement that facilitated the transfer of the two former detainees required parliamentary ratification and the failure of the then President John Mahama to get that ratification was a violation of Article 75 of the 1992 Constitution. "A president can not escape the conditions of article 75", he said.