Judges welcome CJ’s wig fiat

The Association of Judges and Magistrates has welcomed the directive by Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo to all judges to wear gowns and wigs in court.

A memo bearing the signature of Judicial Secretary, Justice Alex B. Poku-Acheampong, dated October 23, 2017 indicated that: “Her Ladyship the Chief Justice has directed that with effect from 1st November, 2017, all judges are to wear wigs during court sittings.”

The memo explained that the decision was taken to preserve the tradition and the uniqueness of the work of judges and the legal profession.

Additionally, the memo said the wearing of wigs would also provide the needed protection and anonymity for judges and enhance personal security.

Lastly, the directive is aimed at restoring the “formal nature of court proceedings and eliminate the creeping casualness in the system”.

Speaking in an interview with Valentina Ofori Afriyie on the 505 programme on Class 91.3FM on Wednesday, November 1, President of the Association of Judges and Magistrates, Justice Victor Offoe, said: “You enter a profession and be bound by what happens in the profession. Wigs and gowns have been part of the profession since donkey years, and at a certain point, some few people thought that, why don’t we do away with the wigs? In any case, let us do it on experiment basis to see how it will go, so doing away with the wig was not the decision that was taken permanently. It was to find out how the responses will be and now the understanding is that for the reasons that have been given in the letter, we should go back for it.

“The reasons they gave in the letter are the reasons for which the wigs and gowns have been worn since colonial era to date. There is a lot of security aspects involved. I have always insisted that we should go back for the wig because it has some security consideration.

“When I wear the wig up there, you have to know me for a long time before you can see that this is the man sitting down there.”

Source: Ghana/

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