The Judicial Service has said Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood has not proceeded on leave prior to her retirement in May this year.
A statement issued by the Judicial Service and signed by Grace Tagoe, Director of Communications, for the Judicial Secretary, said media reports to the contrary were disappointing.
The Judicial Service said it “wishes to correct some misleading media reports which seem to suggest that the Hon. Lady Chief Justice, Mrs Justice Georgina Theodora Wood has proceeded on leave prior to her retirement.”
“This misleading information was fuelled on Friday, 21 February 2017 when Her Ladyship was absent at the State of the Nation Address delivered by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in parliament.
“The Judicial Service would like to place on record that the Chief Justice was absent because she left Ghana on Friday, 18 February 2017 for Egypt to attend a conference of Chief Justices, Presidents of Supreme Courts, Constitutional Courts and Heads of Judiciaries throughout Africa.
“The Chief Justice’s absence was duly communicated to the Presidency and the Speaker of parliament. News of her departure was also broadcast on national radio, GBC’s Radio Ghana during the news at 6pm and 8pm on Saturday, 18 February 2017 and 6am on Sunday, 19 February 2017.
“As per Article 144 (6)(a) and (b) of the 1992 Constitution, in the absence of the Chief Justice, the most senior justice on the Supreme Court bench performs the functions of the Chief Justice. The Service is, therefore, disappointed that media houses, which published the misleading story could not crosscheck their facts with the Service before publication.
“The Service wishes to assure the general public that any news about the retirement of the Chief Justice, when it is due, will be communicated as such. Meanwhile, the Chief Justice is expected back in Accra on Thursday, February 23,” the statement added.
Justice William Atuguba acted as Chief Justice in Mrs Wood’s stead.