Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al-Dhuby have been staying in Ghana since January this year following a deal between Ghana and the USA. Two persons Mrs Margaret Bamfoe and Henry Nana Boakye – have sued the Attorney General and the Minister for the Interior to produce documents covering the agreement on the transfer.
The attorney general had argued that the agreement was confidential and any disclosure in the public or open court would violate section 1 of the State Secrets Act, 1962 (Act 101).
After studying the pact, Ghana’s Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that the agreement must be made available to only the counsel of the plaintiffs since it will not result in any security breach.
Speaking to the media, the lawyer for the plaintiffs, Nana Baffour Agyei Awuah, said he welcomes the ruling.
“Documents evidencing the GITMO agreement between the government of the Republic of Ghana and the government of the United States of America have now been admitted in evidence by the Supreme Court.
“This was after we had examined the documents in-camera and we had made representations or submissions to the effect that there was nothing confidential about it; the content did not in any way infringe upon the Secrecy Act. The Supreme Court, having heard us, came to the conclusion that, indeed, nothing in that agreement infringes upon the State Secrecy Act and, therefore, same should be produced for the use of the court in this matter as evidence and they’ve upheld that and, so, we are exceedingly grateful to the Supreme Court. I think it’s in the spirit of ensuring that the constitution of this land is enforced,” he said.
Two Ghanaian citizens, Margaret Bamful and Henry Nana Boakye, sued the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, together with the Minister of Interior, accusing President John Mahama of illegally bringing in the two former Gitmo detainees, without recourse to the laws of the land.
The plaintiffs are seeking among other reliefs a “declaration that on a true and proper interpretation of Article 75 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the President of the Republic of Ghana acted unconstitutionally by agreeing to the transfer of Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al-Dhuby.”