Anas’ latest exposé captured 34 judges of Ghana’s judiciary – 22 Magistrates and 12 Justices of the High Court – on video, allegedly negotiating, or receiving bribes, to free criminals involved in cases before them.
A 3-hour documentary of the two-year investigative work was screened to a packed audience in the national capital a few weeks ago. It sent shockwaves through the entire country.
The Chief Justice and the Judicial Council have set up a committee to investigate the justices, seven of whom have been suspended after the committee found that they had questions to answer.
All the Magistrates have also been suspended by the Chief Justice, who wields the constitutional authority to take such action, without recourse to the President, as in the case of the High Court Justices.
Opening a newly-constructed US$50 million modern court complex in Accra last week, Mr Mahama said: “Indeed the events of the Anas video have established the convention for the admissibility of video evidence and sting operations in our arsenal for fighting crimes and corruption.”
Mr Mahama said despite the scandal, he still had confidence in the integrity of the majority of judges in the judicial institution.
“I am confident that the majority of our judges are people of integrity; these judges are the healthy tissues that must grow and overcome the cancerous cells invading our judicial organ.
“Secondly, I’m proud of the response of the CJ and the judicial council. The promptness of response and action taken indicate that our systems are working. The judicial council, the Chief Justice and my office have acted swiftly to protect the institution of justice. The referral by the Chief Justice of the petition to my office and the prompt approval for investigations to be conducted into the conduct of the judges cited in the petition gives me great confidence that our constitutional system is working,” Mr Mahama said.
Mr Mahama said he will do everything in his power to fight corruption in the country.
“As President, I wish to assure you about my commitment to the fight against corruption. I’ll continue to work to strengthen our institutions, especially the anti-corruption institutions will be assisted to carry out their work without fear or favour,” he promised.
He said he has set up an implementation committee to make sure that the National Anti-corruption Action Plan (NACAP) adopted by Parliament last year as a national blue print for fighting corruption in the next ten years through education, prevention and enforcement, will achieve its objectives.