President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday administered the Oath of office inducting into Ghana’s judicial system, the 14th Chief Justice of the country, Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah.
Justice Anin-Yeboah, a seasoned lawyer with extensive experience both on the Bench and the Bar, was appointed by President Akufo-Addo last December to succeed Justice Sophia Abena Boafoa Akuffo, who retired last November as the 13th occupant of that office.
His nomination and appointment as Chief Justice was approved unanimously by Parliament last December, after a thorough and rigorous vetting process by the Appointments Committee of the House.
At a short ceremony at the Jubilee House in Accra, President Akufo-Addo said his choice of Justice Anin-Yeboah as the Chief Justice “was not a difficult one to make in view of his level of qualification and the number of years served on the bench of the superior court of judicature”.
Confident that Justice Anin-Yeboah would be an effective leader of the Judiciary, he urged to guard jealously its independence, and bring honour to the Judiciary and the country, and be a worthy successor to his predecessor.
“I expect decency, discipline, fairness, hard work, deep seated respect for the rule of law, and the continuing modernization of the Judicial activities to be the hall marks of his era as Chief Justice,” he said.
The President assured the new Chief Justice that he would be a “reliable and trusted partner of the Judiciary, so that the Executive and Judiciary can cooperate in the spirit of mutual respect to entrench good governance for the advancement of our people”.
“I want to underline this assurance by indicating my willingness and preparedness to help address the infrastructural challenges to the satisfactory functioning of the courts,” he stated.
President Akufo-Addo wished Chief Justice Anin-Yeboah well in his endeavours, and urged the entire judicial system to lend him the needed support to enable him promote the rule of law.
“I urge your continued solidarity and cooperation with the new Chief Justice to promote the rule of law…that will be in line with the finest traditions of the Bench and the Bar, and would help enhance the welfare of the people of Ghana,” he told the Judiciary.
The President conveyed his appreciation to Justice Julius Ansah for holding the fort as the acting Chief Justice during the period of retirement of Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo.
He also thanked Parliament for the expeditious and thorough manner with which it vetted and approved the appointment of Justice Anin-Yeboah for the high office, noting that the unanimous bi-partisan support of his nomination would engender greater public confidence in his appointment.
Justice Anin-Yeboah on his part thanked the President for the confidence reposed in him, and pledged to defend the integrity of the Constitution and to perform his duties without fear or favour, affection or ill-will.
He gave the assurance that he would work to address the infrastructural challenges at the courts, the challenges in the judicial system, as well as the issues that confront legal education in the country.
The Chief Justice, who is also the seventh individual to occupy the office under the Fourth Republican dispensation, also called for the needed financial backing for the improvement of the legal regime in Ghana.
Justice Anin-Yeboah has had considerable experience in the judicial system, having served on the Bench of the Superior courts of adjudicature for 17 years, initially at the High Court, and then at the Court of Appeal, and at the Supreme Court.
After graduating from law school, Justice Anin-Yeboah started as an assistant state attorney at the Attorney-General’s office in Koforidua in the Eastern region. He served as high court judge from 2002 to 2003, became an Appeal court judge from 2003 to 2008. He was appointed to the Supreme Court in 2008 by former President John Kufuor. He is currently the Chair of the governing board of the Legal Aid Commission, and also the Chair of FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee since 2017.
The induction ceremony was witnessed by Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, former Presidents Jerry John Rawlings and John Agyekum Kufuor, former first lady Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, members of the Council of State, the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Chief of Staff at the Presidency, Akosua Frema Osei Opare, traditional rulers, members of the diplomatic Corps among others.