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By Emmanuel Segun – Abuja

The time for the President of the ECOWAS Court of Justice to be call to order on issues bothering on human rights abuse is now and personal vendetta to suppress some of the employees of the regional court for a no just cause.

It is no longer news that Honourable Justice Edward Amoako Asante, President of ECOWAS Court of Justice has been having it rough with some of his employees on his deliberate act of bending critical decisions approved by the council to achieve his personal aspirations which is against the protocol guiding the operation of the court as it relates to the rules of engagement.

However, some of the employees of the court has cried out recently on the way and manner their rights to employment are being abused which is contrary to spirit and letter of Article 33 of the rules of the Community Court of Justice, Article 9 and 10 of the supplementary protocol A/SP.1/01/05 amending the protocol (A/P1/7/91) relating to the community court of justice. Articles 2,3,5,15 and 28 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, Article 2,7 and 23 (1) of the universal declaration of Human Rights Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly Resolution 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948. Articles 2 and 26 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and ECOWAS Staff Regulations Article 7 of Principles of Staff Employment.

From the above, it is crystal clear that the President of the court of justice in collaboration with some of his officers are only out to victimize Temitope Stephen and others despite the decision of the council on July 12th 2022, to retain the current judges with their Executive Assistants pending the time the right judges will be nominated by the countries under military rules in the subregion, Justice Edward Asante after issuing a memo confirming the decision of the council on 18th August 2022 to retain the office holders in line with decision , went ahead to amend the council decision of retaining both the judges with their EA, issued another contrary memo on the 21st of September 2022 to empower the judges to appoint new EA which is against the decision of the council.
Our sources gathered that the President of the Court who has proof to be above the law, signed an appointment letter for another EA who resumed on Friday 21st October 2022 despite his refusal to give the incumbent any end of contract notice till date.

There is also a pending case before the court on the matter and Article 22(2) of protocol 1991 on the Court forbids the Commission or any institution to take any action that will affect the peaceful resolution of any matter before ECOWAS Court of Justice, it is very ironic that it is the President of the Court that is now breaking the rules . This is not a good signal to the ECOWAS community if the President of the Court feels he is not accountable to anyone and above the law.

Since the regional court is established by law to adjudicate on matters brought before her, it will not be out of place for the ECOWAS Commission and Nigeria government to look into the lingering issues of abuse under the international laws upon which the court operates to save the name of the regional body which is been view by other regional comity of nations in bad light considering the treatment been melted on their staff despite the case is before a competent court with Jurisdiction.

It is also worthy of note that it will be disheartening for a regional court of law not be ready to obey it’s own rules for personal aggrandizement.
We continue to monitor the situation and how seriously the future of the Court and her Judgement can be obeyed and enforce on Community citizens when they-the court disobey community law and regulations.
Its a very sad development in the ECOWAS community and a very bad precedence.

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