Chief Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Sackey Torkornoo speaking at the event
Chief Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Sackey Torkornoo speaking at the event
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Chief Justice encourages youth to show interest in law

The Chief Justice, Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo, has emphasised the pivotal role law plays in improving society.

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She has, therefore, stressed the significance of instilling an understanding of the law among young people. Chief Justice Torkornoo stated this last Friday when she swore into office newly elected executives of the Justice Club at Chemu Senior High Technical School in Tema.

The executives were Benjamin Ofotsu Freeman, President; Mary Sowah, Vice-President, Ruth Klutse, Secretary; Boatemaa Acquah, Organiser; Samuel Ato Koomson, Assistant Organiser, and Abigail Asare, Treasurer, with Francis Kobena Tandoh and Wisdom Agama, tutors at Chemu SHTS, as Patrons.

CJ mentoring programme

The initiative is part of the annual Chief Justice's Mentoring Programme. Historically, the Annual Chief Justice’s Mentoring Programme, an initiative of former Chief Justice, Justice Georgina T. Wood, first female Chief Justice of Ghana, was a day’s programme that sought to expose students to the structure of the court system and whip up their interest in the legal profession.

Since assuming office, Justice Torkornoo has taken the initiative a notch higher with the establishment of Justice Clubs in second cycle institutions, where seasoned mentors drawn from the bar and bench have been assigned to mentor club members.

Values of the law

Justice Torkornoo said apart from orienting students on the rule of law, the Justice Club would also assist students to navigate the complex yet interesting world of the law and aid young people to appreciate the values the law affords to those who have an encounter with it.

She highlighted the importance of cultivating an appreciation for the principles of law and justice from an early age, adding that this would enhance the effectiveness of justice delivery and promote peace and prosperity.

“When things are done in an orderly fashion, there’s peace, and as there’s peace, people invest, and when people invest, there’s an increase in prosperity,” she explained.  “There’s a direct linkage between societies that respect the rule of law and societies that are highly prosperous, she added.”

She expressed the hope that the Justice Club would awaken a spirit of excellence in each member as they grew in engagement with the tenets of law.

Pilot

The Chairperson of the CJ Mentoring Programme, Prof. Justice Olivia Anku Tsede, who is a Justice of the Court of Appeal, said so far, six schools, including Chemu SHTS, had been selected to serve as pilots in the formation of the Justice Clubs.

She said to ensure adequate and continuous mentoring, judges, magistrates and lawyers had been assigned to the clubs to interact and mentor the students. Prof. Justice Anku Tsede said membership of the Justice Clubs went beyond students and it was open to people outside the schools, adding that since 2015, the UNFPA has collaborated with the Judicial Service in organising the mentoring programme for some head porters, popularly known as kayayei, to inspire them to pursue the law profession.

“ Two of such girls have made it to the University of Ghana and Accra Technical University respectively,” she stated.

Appreciation

The President of the Chemu SHTS Justice Club, Benjamin Ofotsu Freeman, expressed appreciation to the Chief Justice for the initiative, which he said would inspire them to aim high in their academic pursuits

The Headmistress of Chemu SHTS, Vicentia Kyere Anin-Agyei, also said the establishment of the Justice Club would challenge students to read more and desire knowledge. She appealed for the stocking of the school's library and upgrading of the ICT facility into an electronic library to enhance research to help students in their analysis and academic work.

Writer's email: [email protected]

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