Ghana’s imperfect Judicial System sufficient reason to abolish death sentence – Francis-Xavier Sosu

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Human Rights Lawyer, Francis-Xavier Sosu, has backed calls to end death penalty in Ghana.

The lawyer underscored that people on death row, especially women suffer immensely from trauma for existing at risk of being executed.

“The imperfections of our Judicial System are sufficient reasons why we must do away with death sentence”, a statement issued on October 10, 2021 said.

According to Mr. Sosu, for the about five women on death row, the death penalty has been imposed mainly as the mandatory punishment for murder.

However, he reasoned that trial judges are unable to consider any mitigating factors that relates to murder cases involving women such as prolonged domestic violence in the hands of partners; the circumstances of the offence, or their peculiar backgrounds before sentencing women when they are convicted for murder.

The human rights activist argued further that people could mistakenly be killed only for future evidence to exonerate them.

“This also forms part of the reasons why I have set in motion a Private Member’s Bill to amend various provisions in our Criminal and Other Offences Act (Act 29) to achieve ninety-five (95) percent abolishing of the death penalty”, he disclosed.

Francis-Xavier Sosu, who is also a Deputy Ranking Member on the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee of Parliament, is hoping that Ghana would soon achieve at least 95 percent abolishing of the death penalty.

Should this happen, Ghana will become the 24th African country to abolish the death penalty from its statute books, following neighbours including Sierra Leone, Guinea, Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Togo and Chad the next time the day is marked.

In commemorating World Day against Death Penalty, the Madina MP quoted the UN Chief, Antonio Guterres, saying that “the death penalty has no place in the 21st Century.”

The theme for this year’s celebration is “Women and death penalty, an invisible reality.”


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