‘I would have been sanctioned if I had refused to defend Aisha Huang’ – Effah Dartey

Captain Nkrabeah Effah Dartey (Rtd) has defended why he is defending Aisha Huang despite admitting the devastating effect of illegal mining a.k.a. ‘galamsey’ on Ghana’s environment.

The lawyer has revealed that the oath he swore before becoming a lawyer demands him to defend any person that comes to him for his service devoid of race, gender, nationality or any other thing.

He says his refusal therefore, to defend Aisha Huang would have resulted in sanctioning from the Ghana Bar Association for breaching the oath he swore as a lawyer.

Speaking Saturday, October 15, 2022 on TV3’s the Key Points, Mr. Effah Dartey told host Alfred Ocansey that the fact that he is defending her does not mean he supports the idea.

“The fact that our water bodied are being destroyed, the fact that galamsey has negative effects on our environment does not mean that the state and for that matter anybody can just throw an allegation on anybody and that person should go undefended.

“In fact the Ghana Bar Association would sanction me if I’m reported that just for saying that our water bodies are being destroyed I’ve refused to defend Aisha Huang. The Bar Association would sanction me because the fact that I’m defending Aisha Huang does not mean I support the idea,” he said.

He continued further that:

“I was called to the bar on 3rd October,1986 by Chief Justice E.N.P Sowah. I took an oath that anybody who will comes to me for my legal service, I will do the best I can to defend him/her without fear or favour. I have been very very honest to this oath until May, 2021 when I was sworn as Deputy Minister of state at the ministry of Local Government. From that day I stopped going to court and I never stepped in the court room untill May, 2005/06 when President Kufuor reshuffled me out of his government then I came back to the court room as a private lawyer.”

He continued that, “as a private lawyer, I’m in my office. If anybody come to me with a problem, I evaluate it, I charge you, you pay me and I go to court to defend you and this is what I have been doing consistently since 2006 till date. I was there when I was contacted to defend Aisha Haung. I looked at her facts, I listened to her side of the story and I thought I could defend her and we went to court.

“What many people don’t know is that the trial before High Court Criminal 1, Justice Ekow Baiden’s court, it travelled for almost one year. Infact, more than one year. Because I got into the case in 2017 and in 2018 December 18, Attorney General entered into nolle prosequi. Nolle Prosequi is a latin expression which means don’t prosecute.

“So when I saw a newspaper article/report, that Aisha Huang was remanded by Circuit Court 9, I asked myself that when did Aisha come back? Why didn’t she contact me? Not knowing she is being kept at BNI cells and she was trying to get in touch with me. Pressure from BNI operatives, that Captain Aisha Huang wants to see you then I went through my junior lawyers, we met her and we took up the case again.”