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Gov’t to recruit additional 500 state attorneys — says Dame

Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Minister-designate for Justice and Attorney-General, says the Ministry would collaborate with the Finance Ministry to release funds to recruit an extra 500 state attorneys, if given the nod.

Answering questions from members of the Appointments Committee of Parliament, during his vetting, Mr Dame said the Akufo-Addo-led Administration, in its first term, recruited 110 state attorneys, bringing the total staff to 226.

However, the numbers were not sufficient to effectively perform the work of defending the state and government in court as mandated under Article 88 of the 1992 Constitution.

Commenting on the conditions of service of state attorneys, Mr Dame said though government had undertaken measures to improve those conditions, it was not satisfactory as there was insufficient desks and office spaces for them to work.

Mr Dame, however, said 36 vehicles were purchased by government to facilitate transportation of state attorneys while efforts were ongoing to complete the Law House to provide office spaces for them.

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Responding to the question of occasional frosty relationship between the Bench and lawyers, Mr Dame said administration of justice was critical for proper functioning of the Ghanaian society.

Therefore, it was imperative for lawyers to avoid prejudicial comments in the media space and always uphold the sanctity and integrity of the judicial process.

He pledged to initiate processes towards the passage of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers Bill, when given the approval.

Expressing his views on the amendment of the 1992 Constitution, Mr Dame said Article 78, requiring the President to appoint majority of ministers from Parliament, needed to be amended urgently.

He responded to questions on the Agyapa Gold Royalty deal, dismissal of Mr Agyenim Boateng Adjei, the CEO of Public Procurement Authority, for fraudulent procurement contracts, award of contract to Frontier Healthcare Service Limited to undertake Antigen Testing at the country’s Airport, and legal education in Ghana, among others.

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—GNA