Supreme Court Judge, Justice William Atuguba has said judges and magistrates in the country must be given a “unique” remuneration system which would be different from all existing salary systems in Ghana.
“I call on the Bar, the Judicial Council and the Bench to coordinate their efforts and engage the article 71 committees and other relevant authorities to press for, recognition of and response of the fact that the Bench has a unique and pivotal role to play in this country and its conditions of Service must correspondingly be unique and should not be considered in common with any generalized policy on pay structure or the like," he said.
“In this connection I call for the restoration of an enhanced leave allowance, substantial entertainment allowance, a handsome allowance for the loss of private professional practice as it is enjoyed by Doctors, Teachers, and others,” Justice Atuguba added.
He further called on judges and magistrates in the country to endeavour to live a secluded life away from the public in order for them not to fall into the hands of corrupt individuals who might want to bribe them to influence justice.
“The Anas exposé underscores the convention of life in seclusion on the bench.
“This convention seems to have waned on the altar of modernity but our predicament should lead to its vigorously reassertion. The observance of this convention and code of ethics will greatly insulate us from this social portaging arising from unbridled social interaction.
“It is better for a person on the bench to be wrongly perceived as anti-social than to be correctly perceived to be corrupt,” he said.
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Ghana was hit with a massive judicial scandal in 2015 when it was revealed in an exposé by Anas Aremeyaw Anas that Superior and lower court judges took bribes in order to free criminals.
Over twenty magistrates have so far been removed from office based on the recommendations of the committee formed to investigate allegations of “stated misbehavior” leveled against them.