Hundreds of litigants across the country, particularly in the Ashanti Region, have been left stranded at the various courts as a result of the withdrawal of services by the staff of the Judicial Services Staff Association of Ghana [JUSAG].
The main entrance to the Kumasi Court Complex was locked Friday morning to litigants to signify the beginning of the nationwide indefinite strike by the staff who are demanding the implementation of an approved increment in salary and allowance by the government.
According to the workers, government has since 2012 when the reviewed salaries and allowances were approved, been playing delay tactics with its implementation; something that leave them no choice than to withdraw their services.
The strike is expected to grind justice delivery in the country to a halt as the workers of the various courts are participating in the action. Already, the courts are overwhelmed with cases at the moment and the strike, if not suspended soon, would greatly burdened the already choked system.
TV3’s William Evans Nkum reports that litigants who showed up at the Kumasi Court Complex Friday morning to have their cases heard by the various court were stranded. “The main gate to the complex was branded with red bands. The security would not allow anybody in, not even the news team,” he adds.
He reports that the litigants, some of who travelled from far to the place, were unaware of the strike by the work as they claim they did not get any communication from their lawyers regarding the strike.
The litigants expressed disappointment at the situation and wondered how they are going to get another date for their cases to be heard by the courts; a situation that compelled the litigants to hang around the premises with the hope of getting new court dates.
“If i get a new date, i will leave and then come on that day,” one of the litigants who gave his name as Obed told our correspondent.
Another person, Agnes Brenya also said: “We are supposed to be here this morning but when we came, the place has been closed and there are red [bands] around the place. Nobody told us that today there will be no court. We are just standing here thinking about ourselves”