I have read with great sadness for my country, Ghana, Lawyer Maxwell Opoku-Agyemang’s response to what he described as “media reports” on his nomination to the Court of Appeal and petitions against him on the admission of some 10 students into the Ghana School of Law.
I am first of all surprised by his claims that he has no idea that he has been or is being recommended for the position as Justice of the Court of Appeal of the Republic of Ghana – something I’m told has even been his long-time dream.
In my opinion, I don’t see why Mr. Opoku-Agyemang should be crying to explain himself with the things he has said unless, maybe, the motive was to court public sympathy and to divert the attention of Ghanaians and make them into believing that he has done no wrong in that illegality but rather have done or doing this country a favor. I was thinking he had reserved those comments for his response to the petitions unless he wants to tell Ghanaians that he knows those intuitions petitioned will not act on them.
It is worth noting that Mr. Opoku-Agyemang has actually admitted to having admitted those ten students who failed the entrance exams into the Ghana School of Law on what he described as “concessionary basis” without the approval of the General Legal Council.
In his own words he said “the school offered concessionary admission to 10 students upon request from key stakeholders who have contributed immensely to the school and the nation as a whole.” and continued that “Admittedly, the offer of the 10 concessionary admissions was made without the approval of the General Legal Council but was not done in secrecy. The issue was brought to the attention of the Chairperson of the Examinations Committee. Other key members of the Council were also aware due to discussions on the issue prior to the admissions.”
From Mr. Opoku-Agyemang’s claims, he introduced the “concessionary admission system” though not approved by the General Legal Council, to reward himself and those he described as “stakeholders” who have “contributed immensely to the school”. This simply means that he is actually creating and or created a system to formalize and institutionalize the abuse of office, discrimination, bribery, and corruption in the admission process into the Law School where ordinally people like myself whose parents are present farmers or petty traders, etc are disadvantaged for people in higher authorities he is referring to as “stakeholders” – a system which will be discriminatory, not based on merits and inconsistent with the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana.
What Mr. Opoku-Agyemang wanted to do and done gives credence to allegations of heavy protocol list that characterizes the recruitment of personnel into the security services (Police, Army, Immigration, Customs, Fire Service, and Prisons). This must not be allowed to fester in Ghana. What about teachers, doctors, nurses, police, military, and many other civil servants across this country that have served in various capacities for many years? Should such a concessionary system be put in place to give their children and or families priority when it comes to recruitments into the areas they severed?
My people, the most surprising of all the revelations this “Indeed, it should be made known that one offer of admission paved the way for the release of an entire building at KNUST which serves as the Kumasi Campus of the Law School. This enabled the school to increase the intake in Kumasi from 50 to over 200 as well as secure places for a library, staff common room, administration facility, and a canteen for the students. I must stress all the decisions taken in my one year as Acting Director were in the best interest of the School and students.”
The above makes me lose hope in our country’s future. So, Mr. Opoku-Agyemang is saying this “powerful” person whose child or family member was among the 10 students has the capacity, ability, and power to make a whole institution like my own alma-Mata, the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), allocate an “entire building at KNUST which serves as the Kumasi Campus of the Law School” but waited for many young Ghanaians who want to have access to legal education go through hell until his/her child was given an admission even when that child failed the entrance exam? What is the fate of that building now that the 10 students have been withdrawn? This is nothing but a high-scale hijack of the system.
As a matter of fact, this matter must not be swept under the carpet as usual. Mr. Opoku-Agyemang should be telling us:
- who are the said stakeholders who benefited from that illegality?
- What is the identity of those ten students?
- Who is the powerful person that has the power to help young Ghanaians have access to legal education yet waited because he or she had no personal benefit at the time?
Let me end with a quote from Albert Einstein “The world is a dangerous place to live. Not because of the people who are evil; but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”
Read the full text of Mr. Opoku-Agyemang’s response
By Korsi Senyo