Gertrude Araba Esaaba Is Ghana’s New Chief Justice

Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Torkornoo

President Akufo-Addo has nominated Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Torkornoo as the new Chief Justice.

In a letter sent to the Council of State on Tuesday, April 25, the President stated that the purpose of her nomination is to prevent a vacancy that would arise when the current Chief Justice, Kwasi Anin Yeboah, retires on May 24, 2023.

“Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah is due to retire from the bench on May 24, 2023, his seventieth birthday. In order to avoid a vacuum and ensure that a new Chief Justice is immediately in office after his retirement.

“I have decided to begin the process of appointment now. Article 144 (1) of the constitution, which governs the appointment of a Chief Justice, requires that, I, first consult with the council of state before seeking the approval Parliament.

“Consequently, I am nominating Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Torkornoo, a member of the Supreme Court, as the new Chief Justice. I hereby enclose a copy of her curriculum vitae for your attention,” excerpts of the letter said.

In accordance with this nomination, Parliament will review Justice Mrs. Torkornoo and either approve or reject her nomination.

She will succeed Justices Sophia Akuffo and Georgina Theodora Wood as Ghana’s third female Chief Justice.

Gertrude Araba Esaaba Torkornoo: Who Is She?

Gertrude Torkornoo hails from Winneba in the Central region of Ghana.

What Makes Afia Drah That Unique?

She was born in Cape Coast on September 11, 1962. She went to Wesley Young ladies’ Secondary School where she got her ordinary level certificate and Achimota School for her high level certificate.

She is a graduated class of the University of Ghana and moved on from the Ghana School of Law in 1986.

In 2001 she obtained a Postgraduate Diploma in International Law and Organization from the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), part of Erasmus University in the Netherlands.

In 2011, she graduated from the Golden Gate University, USA with an LLM in Intellectual Property Law.

Justice Torkornoo interned at Nabarro Nathanson in London and served as a volunteer at the FIDA Legal Aid Service prior to joining Fugar & Co. as an associate.

She got back to the firm (Fugar and Co.) in 1994 to become a director.

She co-founded Sozo Law Consult in January 1997, where she served as Managing Partner until her appointment as a Justice of the High Court of Ghana on May 14, 2004.

She was appointed to the Court of Appeal in October 2012 after serving as a judge in the High Court.

Justice Torkornoo was assigned to the High Court of Ghana in November 2019.

She was sworn into office on 17 December 2019.

Leadership Profile:

Justice Torkornoo has held a few influential positions in the judicial service.

In her work as chair of E-Justice Committee, she has led the planning of automation of all levels of courts, procurement and incorporation of the use of electronic resources and software in the work of the Judicial Service.

She has also served as the Supervising Judge of commercial courts since 2013 where she has set the agenda for and chaired the meetings and programs of the Users Committee of the Commercial Courts.

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