The 2021 Ghana Human Rights report has indicated that the judiciary in Ghana was subject to unlawful influence and corruption.
According to the U.S. Department of State’s 2021 Annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices released on April 12, 2022, “While the constitution and law provide for an independent judiciary, the judiciary was subject to unlawful influence and corruption.”
“Judicial officials reportedly accepted bribes to expedite or postpone cases, ‘lose’ records, or issue favourable rulings for the payer of the bribe,” it added.
The report stated that a judicial complaints unit within the Ministry of Justice headed by a retired Supreme Court justice addressed complaints from the public, such as unfair treatment by a court or judge, unlawful arrest or detention, missing trial dockets, delayed trials, and rendering of judgments, and bribery of judges.
The report, however, noted that the government “generally respected court orders”.
Excerpts of the report on the judiciary indicated that the constitution and law provide for the right to a fair hearing, and an independent judiciary generally enforced this right.
Criminal hearings must be public unless the court orders them closed in the interest of public morality, public safety, public order, defence, the welfare of persons younger than age 18, protection of the private lives of persons concerned in the proceedings, and as necessary or expedient where publicity would prejudice the interests of justice.
Source: Pulse Ghana