Source: myjoyonline.com - National Democratic Congress lawyer Abraham Amaliba says his long-held view the judiciary is corrupt has been vindicated following a bribery scandal that has rocked the judiciary.
He reports that more than 34 judges were filmed taking bribes is all déjà vu for him because he made claims in 2011 that there was corruption in the system.
“We were taken to the cleaners…and vilified by our own peers” he said on Joy FM's Newsnight.
In August 2011, four lawyers, Abraham Amaliba, Raymond Atuguba, Chris Ackumey, and Larry Bimi were hauled before the General Legal Council by the Association of Judges and Magistrates over allegations of endemic bribery and corruption in the judiciary.
Amaliba accused the Association of Judges and Magistrates of using him and the others as scapegoats and “using a sledge-hammer to kill an ant”.
A case Dr. Raymond Atuguba was handling at the Supreme Court was adjourned indefinitely after he, together with the others made the allegations in April 2011.
Dr. Raymond Atuguba had said that ''between 1997 and 1999, I stayed in the house of a judge, and so there is nobody in Ghana who can convince me that judges are not corrupt," he argued.
He cited instances where bribes meant for a judge staying next door were mistakenly brought to his house. He said on a number of occasions the judge he lived with returned bribes and at times, 'I had to assist him to drive some of the people away'.
The four say they suffered stigmatisation and criticism from many of their colleagues and became outcasts in courts.
Giving his own experience with corruption, Amaliba said he was shocked when a judge told him “counsel today is Friday what do you have for me?”.
The expression, a popular statement made when people request for tips, he said, was used by a lady judge after a hearing of a family matter had ended.
“The lady is now no more a judge,” he said, thanks to swift action taken by the Chief Justice following “our expose”, Amaliba said.
Two judges have been sacked since he and some colleagues made allegations and brought same to Justice Georgina Wood’s attention.
He was full of praise for the Chief Justice for taking action when he made the allegations.
Mr Amaliba praised the CJ who has suspended 22 circuit court judges and magistrates for allegedly receiving bribes.
He said Anas Aremeyaw Anas' latest work is an opportunity for the judiciary to be cleansed.
He wants the Chief Justice to seize the chance and “punish them severely”.
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