Ghana is set to have its second successive female Chief Justice with the appointment of Justice Sophia Akuffo, all but confirmed. Her nomination is to be officially announced by the President at a press briefing later today.
Local media portals including the state-owned Daily Graphic have reported that she has been nominated by the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. Her appointment is subject to approval by the country’s parliament.
If confirmed by the legislature, she will become the 13th Chief Justice in the West African country’s history and the fifth under the current constitution. She will take over from Georgina Theodora Wood who retires in June. Wood was Ghana’s first woman Chief Justice.
She will thus become the fourth most powerful person in the country behind the President, his vice and the Speaker of Parliament.
Here are some facts about Ghana’s next Chief Justice:
- She has served as justice of the Supreme Court for the last two decades.
- In January 2006, she was elected as one of the first judges of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
- She was re-elected until 2014 when she served as the Vice-President of the court.
- She is the immediate past President of the African Court on Human and People’s Rights.
- Ms. Justice Akuffo holds a master’s degree in Law (LLM) from the University of Harvard, USA.
- She has been a justice of the Supreme Court since 1995.
- She was the second most senior judge but the seniormost is also expected to retire next year.