Source: Daily Graphic Ghana - The Convention People’s Party (CPP) has filed a second suit urging the Human Rights Division of the High Court to order the government to return two properties to the party.

It also wants the court to direct the defendants occupying the said properties to pay rent from February 1966, the time of the confiscation.
A major property being sought after is the eight-storey Republic House building which is currently housing a branch of the GCB Bank and the Nkrumah Flats at Lartebiokorshie in Accra.

Last month, CPP caused its lawyer, Mr Bright Akwetey, to file an application for the return of 49 confiscated assets belonging to the CPP and scattered across the country.

This latest suit is asking the court to declare the confiscation to the state, of the eight-storey Republic House, as property belonging to Dr Kwame Nkrumah as wrongful, unlawful, unjust and unwarranted having regard to the evidence available.

The defendants in this fresh suit are the Attorney-General, Ghana Supply Company and the State Housing Company (SHC).

Additional Reliefs

The other reliefs being sought by the plaintiff are an order directed at the defendants to restore the two properties to the CPP.

Another relief being sought by the plaintiff is “an order declaring the confiscation of the Laterbiokorshie Estates (Nkrumah Flats) to the state as property belonging to Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah as wrongful, unjustifiable, unjust and in violation of the principles of law and equity.”

The plaintiff is praying for the return of a building housing NADECO to the CPP and additional order declaring that, “the continued confiscation of NADECO assets is discriminatory and unconstitutional.”

Background

The CPP, last month, dragged the government to the Human Rights Division of the High Court for a return of its confiscated assets across the country.

A writ of summons filed on behalf of the party by Mr Akwetey, is asking the court to order the government to return its confiscated assets, which had for the past 49 years been occupied by state agencies without the payment of rent.

It is also praying for an order for the payment of a lump compensation to the party after its property was confiscated following the overthrow of Ghana’s first president, Dr Kwame Nkrumah.

The government was sued through the Attorney-General.

Reliefs being sought

The applicant is praying the court to declare the confiscation of the listed properties as unlawful and contrary to the rules of natural justice.

It is also seeking an order stating that the continued confiscation of the listed properties as discriminatory.

An order declaring that the occupation of the listed state bodies and institutions for the past 49 years as unlawful and contrary to the democratic principles and the rule of law is also being sought.

The applicant is urging the court to direct the government to release all the nine properties listed in the schedule.

“An order directed at the government to remove from each property without delay, each and every occupant of any and all such properties, however, not later than December 31, 2015,” the writ of summons noted.

An order directed at the government to pay a lump sum of compensation to be professionally assessed for the use of the nine properties for the past 49 years, among others.

Assets to be released

Properties being sought after by the applicant are a three-storey building housing the Ministry of Information and the Information Services Department (ISD) in Accra; a three-storey building at Sunyani where the Brong Ahafo Regional Headquarters of the Ghana Police Service is located; three separate storey buildings in Takoradi; a two-storey building in Koforidua holding the Metropolitan Office as well as a storey building at Tarkwa holding state agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Ghana News Agency (GNA), Town and Country Planning, Tarkwa Nsuayem Municipal Assembly and others.

The CPP is requesting the court to order the return of its four-storey building at Kumasi which is currently housing the Ghana Education Service (GES), ISD and a separate three-storey building in Cape Coast holding the Metropolitan Education Office, the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), the Land Valuation Division of the Lands Commission, Birth and Deaths Registry, Rent Control offices and the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE).
A one-storey building in Tamale holding the ISD would also be affected should the court decide to order its return to the CPP.

Statement of Claim

A statement accompanying the writ of summons states that listed properties were put up with the contribution of members of the CPP.

“Plaintiff asserts that some of the internally generated funds were deducted at source from remunerations paid to workers who were members of the party.

The state has over the past 49 years occupied the confiscated properties without paying any rent to the party, thereby, denying the CPP the expected income,” the statement of claim asserted.

It went on to state that “instead of building offices for the various state institutions occupying these properties and making them self sufficient as regards their accommodation, successive governments have rather depended on the confiscated properties for the accommodation of these institutions and state bodies.”

According to the plaintiff, efforts to claim its confiscated properties had been met with “promises and half-hearted measures” by successive governments.

It said the continued unlawful occupation and use of the properties by state institutions and other bodies identified in the schedule was a deliberate act to continue denying the plaintiff of its property and legitimate income.
It is, therefore, praying for the court to grant its reliefs.
 


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