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Supreme Court Rules Payment of Salaries to Spouses of President and Vice President Unconstitutional

The Supreme Court of Ghana has declared the payment of salaries and allowances to the spouses of the President and Vice President unconstitutional.

The seven-member panel, chaired by Chief Justice Gertrude Torkornoo, unanimously held that the positions of the First and Second Ladies of Ghana do not fall under the category of public office holders.

The court’s decision stems from a case brought by Mr. Kwame Baffoe, also known as Abronye D, the Bono Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).

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Mr. Abronye challenged parliament’s approval of payment of salaries and allowances to the spouses of the President and Vice President from the consolidated fund.

One of Mr. Abronye’s reliefs, which sought to declare that parliament cannot initiate or approve payment of such emoluments without a bill from the government, was not granted.

However, the court did rule in his favor regarding the unconstitutionality of the payments.

Similarly, a case filed by Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament for South Dayi Constituency, was partially successful.

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While some of Mr. Dafeamekpor’s reliefs were dismissed, one was granted, highlighting the complexity of the legal issues at hand.

The Supreme Court emphasized that the Emolument Committee of Parliament is limited to recommending salaries and benefits for public office holders.

This ruling clarifies the boundaries of parliamentary authority in matters of emoluments and sets a precedent for future cases involving public funds and constitutional matters.

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