It has come to my attention from a very reliable source that two court bailiffs based in Kumawu in the Ashanti region are very needlessly, if not illegally, chasing and harassing a Kumawu-born-and-based trained journalist. It is totally senseless by the perspective of any Ghanaian residing in the advanced western world for the bailiffs to be pursuing a course of action that will have no legs to stand on in any civilized society, except probably, in Ghana, where lawlessness seem to reign supreme.
The two bailiffs in question are Messrs Akuoko and Joe, working for the Kumawu Circuit Court. A full narration of the story will help people better understand the preposterousness of their action.
There is a certain Ghanaian man residing in the United Kingdom but hails from Kumawu. He is putting up a building in Kumawu. A neighbour claims the plot on which the man is putting up the house belongs to him but not to he who is constructing the house. Subsequently, the said owner of the land, thus, plot, a relative of the late Nana Amma Adu, Mr Apenteng, etc.,who were otherwise the true owners of the plot if indeed, the plot does not belong to the UK-based Ghanaian putting up the house, has instituted a writ of summons against whoever is erecting the house.
How the bailiffs are going about serving the writ to the person putting up the house is what bothers me, depicting the unprofessionalism, stupidity and lawlessness of the bailiffs. Their philosophy of going about things anyhow, same believing how things are done in Ghana hence very lawful, is what has annoyed me so much to publish the story for the whole world to see and hear.
They have served a writ of summons and/or interlocutory injunction on a sister (Maame Mercy) of the UK-based man who lives in Kumawu and a few metres away from the contentious plot. They have again served same to Kumawu Aduanahene, on the grounds that the UK-based man is his brother. They have severally intimidatingly been chasing the son of the man, the said journalist, to serve him a copy of the writ on the simple understanding that it is his father who is putting up the house. How absurd, unprofessional and lawless could the bailiffs be! Is it how it goes in Ghana? And if yes, then I say, how it sucks!
They have been chasing the son of the man wherever he goes, or sighted from a distance, to serve him the writ. They are trying their hardest, harassingly of course, to get him to accept the writ even though, it is understood to be in the name of Kwaku Manu whereas he is neither Kwaku Manu by alias, nor true name. He has told them he is not Kwaku Manu, therefore, he cannot accept any court document destined for Kwaku Manu.
Following their incessant harassment of him, chasing him around as though he is a thief or a murderer who has to be arrested by any means possible, the alleged Kwaku Manu went to the Kumawu Circuit Court to inform the registrar about what his junior staff members are doing to him. He told the registrar that he is not the person they are after since he does not bear that name. He then disclosed his name to the registrar.
The registrar advised him not to accept the writ since it is not in his name and he, the registrar, would direct the bailiffs not to pursue him any further. However, the named bailiffs have not adhered to the registrar’s advice but are still following him aggressively to serve him the writ, although still in the wrong name.
As the alleged Kwaku Manu could not stand the intimidation any further, he has reported the case of his constant pestering by the two unethical bailiffs to the Kumawu police. Sadly, his worst nightmare is on the ascendency, instead of abating.
I wonder how a journalist cannot avail himself of the laws of the land to put the nonsensicalities in perpetuation by the bailiffs to rest for good, but allows them to make his life a complete hell. Is it because laws don’t work in Ghana, or the laws only favour the rich, the learned and the nobles?
From the information I have gathered so far, the son of the man alleged to be Kwaku Manu, was in Accra when his father through some contractors started building the house. He has not set foot on the plot and has not been accorded any oversight responsibility for the building under construction.
Let me ask the bailiffs and the entire Ghana court system a few questions to put my mind to rest as I find certain of their actions so incongruent to how justice delivery goes in the civilized western world where people, including school-going children, are proud to stand up tall to defend their rights by proudly saying, “I know my rights”
1. Has the said Kwaku Manu been seen on the plot directing works on the ongoing building project?
2. If your father is say a criminal, does it make you an automatic criminal in which case if your father was wanted to answer questions, the son could be taken to stand in for him? By this analogy, I mean to say if your father is building a house on say, someone else’s plot without permission, could his son who has nothing to do with it and probably not heard from the father for the past decade be held accountable, if not condemnable, for it, as it is the case with the ongoing unfolding true story taking place in Kumawu?
3. Can the court serve a writ to someone in a different name other than theirs and still hold it legally right as having served the writ to the right person? What, if the person does not honour the writ? If it were me, Rockson Adofo, not only will I not accept it but rebukingly lecture the bailiffs on the duties of their profession.
4. Do the bailiffs know that they can end up being sued for needlessly harassing an innocent person because of the abundance of their lack of knowledge in the laws and how they are interpreted? How can you chase someone around in the hope of serving a writ to him when the person has told you he is not known by the name in which the writ is written but a different name?
Anyway, why should I spend my precious time asking the incompetent bailiffs questions? Why not point out to them the right direction? Subsequently, I shall advise the bailiffs or the court to place injunction on the construction of the building. Whoever is seen or caught working on the building, be he a mason, carpenter or a labourer, must be served a writ to appear in court. By this, the court or whoever is currently claiming to be the owner of the plot will get to know the actual owner of the building under construction. Without this, all those they have so far served writs to, and are seeking to serve writs to, will not resolve the problem. They are serving the writs to wrong persons and for stupid reasons that denigrate the judicial system of Ghana.
Honestly, what they are doing cannot be done to any of the Ghanaians who live abroad and are not only conversant with their rights, but are ready to stand up to defend them when they come to Ghana. This is the more reason why you often hear the police and other people say, “Mmo abrokyirefo3 dee mmo ye too know”, meaning, “you Ghanaians residing abroad are too knowing”. This is all because we shall not allow any idiot to trample on our rights for the sake of it. We shall defend our rights when we perceive that we are being wronged by the many corrupt rogues in Ghana, be whoever they are.
I shall escalate this roguish attitude by the bailiffs to their superior should it not cease after this publication but be seen to continue.
Where are Abenaa Apenteng, Yaa Mansah, Afua Fofie et all that their unknown relative from Kumawu-Woraso should come to arrange bailiffs to pester an innocent person? What are they doing or saying about it since they know better?
Tuesday, 01 September 2020