Dafeamokpor LGBTQ Application: High Court directs parties to file submissions

The Accra High Court handling Mr Rockson Nelson Dafeamekpor’s application for mandamus to compel the Speaker of Parliament and the President to act on the anti LGBTQ bill within seven days, has directed parties to file their submissions.

They are to make their next appearance on June 29, 2024.

Mr Dafeamekpor, also the South Dayi Member of Parliament’s (MP’s), prayed the Court to direct the Speaker of Parliament to present the Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill to the President in accordance with Article 106 (7) of the Constitution on the basis that Parliament duly complied with all the Constitutional provisions.

The MP also prayed that the Bill must be transmitted to and received by the President for assent or otherwise in accordance with Article 106 (7) of the Constitution.

Again, Mr Dafeamekpor wanted an order directed at the President to receive the Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill as presented by Parliament in accordance with Article 106 (7) of the Constitution to either assent to it
or otherwise.

The Court presided over by Justice Ellen Lordina Mireku, dismissing the application to fast track the passage of the Bill, held that although the court had jurisdiction over the matter, granting of mandamus was discretional.

To her, the Supreme Court should be allowed to determine the cases before it.

Another reason the Court gave was that there was an argument of a breach of the Constitution in the passage of the Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Bill by Parliament and would therefore be inappropriate to compel the Speaker to transmit the Bill, considering the pending suits at the apex court.

Prior to the Court’s decision, Madam Sylvia Adesu, Chief State Attorney, also argued that the application was premature and violated principle of the separation of powers.

She said the Constitution did not allow the court to interfere with the work of Parliament.

The Chief State Attorney said the applicant did not fulfil the requirements for a mandamus to be granted. Madam Adesu said it would be
very disrespectful for the Bill to be transmitted to the President for him to act on it when there were suits before the Supreme Court, challenging its passage.

Nii Kpakpo Samoa Addo, counsel for Mr Dafeamekpor, said the arms of government must operate within the ambit of the Constitution.

Citing Article 286(5) which stipulates that the Office of the President and the Speaker are public offices and subject to the Judicial jurisdiction of the court.

Applicant’s lawyer said the court had exclusive jurisdiction over mandamus.

Source: Ghana News Agency