Legal practitioner, George Tetteh Wayo, says the Attorney-General’s office will need a convincing argument to compel Appeals Court judges to overturn the High Court ruling on the admission of the two Rastafarians into Achimota School.
Tetteh Wayo, who is part of the legal team for the Rastafarian students said the High Court’s verdict on the matter connotes his clients were fighting within the ambit of the law.
He said the Attorney-General couldn’t make a good case in the first trial, stressing that it will be a huge surprise if they are able to overturn the first verdict with the same argument this time.
The legal practitioner was speaking in connection with Achimota School and the Attorney-General’s appeal to contest the case in which the High Court ruled in favor of two Rastafarians students who were initially rejected admission by the school on religious and moral grounds.
Defining the appeal and what he expects as the outcome, the lawyer for the Rastafarians said going into this second trial, the petitioners must prove to the jury why they must brush off the first verdict and accept the new charges.
“We are going to go on appeal and they must come and justify why the ruling must be set aside or the court must overturn or depart from that ruling,” he told Afia Ofosua on Metro TV’s News Beat, Tuesday, September 14.
He said it is an uneasy initiative as the stakes are high and must meet certain requirements, indicating that the petitioners must find new grounds for their argument and must fall within the confines of the law.
“And it is a tall order. It must meet certain thresholds. There must be new markets that didn’t come off that you are bringing up. There must be new ambits of the law that you’re bringing to overturn the existing position that a judge has taken,” he indicated.
Lawyer Tetteh Wayo said he has no doubt about the standpoint of the High Court judges in the first case, admitting that their verdicts were based on that part of the law that endorses the freedom of the citizen.
“We are clear in our minds that the judge was very strict that you cannot limit the Right to Education. You cannot limit the right to religion unless you have justifiable reasons for that,” he sounded.
Lawyer Wayo said the fact that the school couldn’t make any valid argument during the first trial makes him confident this second trial won’t make any difference but indicxated it will beat his imagination if they are able to come up with something different this time.
“At the trial, they couldn’t demonstrate any critical reasons why these rights of these children to go to school must be curtailed. So we will be surprised to see them come on with the appeal and bring a new law or a new argument they have,” he expressed doubt.
Mr. Wayo indicated the Attorney-General’s office will not be doing itself any good if they come with the same argument, noting that they will be met with the same old conclusions.
“If they are coming back with the same line of argument, we rest assured that they will be met with the same ruling as we have today because they must justify why they must limit the fundamental human rights of these children,” he added.
By: Ernest Tetteh Kabu | Mdetrotvonline.com | Ghana