05 August 2017

Release ‘deported’ Indian from detention – Court orders Immigration

An Accra High Court Presided over by Justice Kwaku Ackaah Boafo has ordered an Indian businessman, Ashok Kumar Sivaram, to be released by the Immigration Service immediately, after being arrested and detained at the Kotoka International Airport for 2 days.

The judge ordered his passport to be retained by the Immigration, while the Indian ànd his lawyer must report to immigration on Tuesday August 8.

The judge on 31st July, 2017 declared the deportation as illegal and an abuse of discretionary power on the part of the the Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery.

According to Kasapa FM’s Daakyehene Ofosu Agyeman, the Indian arrived in Ghana on 2nd August, 20¹7 only for him to be detained by the Immigration because he didn’t have a visa.

Lawyer for the victim, Gary Nimako told the court that his client has been treated unfairly and was not given opportunity to apply for a visa and therefore wants him to be released from detention.

Mr. Sivaram according to the deportation order, “acquired and submitted a forged Marriage Certificate in Support of his application for Citizenship by Registration as a Ghanaian in 2015. Based on this, the Minister for the Interior concluded that his continued presence in Ghana was not conducive to the public good and therefore deported him.

The applicants subsequently filed an order for Judicial review in the form of a Certiorari, to quash the decision of the Interior Minister which has already been executed by the Ghana Immigration Service.


The Court

The court first dismissed the application by the AG seeking the dismissal of the application by lawyers of the aggrieved Indian businessman on grounds that the application was not properly before the Court.

The court held that contrary to the contention by the AG that the applicant should have sued the AG instead of the Minister of Interior and Controller of the Immigration in person, the court is of the opinion that the application for Judicial review by way of certiorari is properly before the court.

The court further stated that its decision is premised on Article 141 of the 1992 constitution which gives the High Court the power to review decisions of lower courts and other administrative bodies.

The court also held that the Minister for the Interior exceeded his jurisdiction when he issued the deportation order. Additionally, the Indian National’s right to be heard was also breached by the Minister in that he was not given a fair hearing before his deportation.

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