Deputy Special Prosecutor nominee proposes ‘plea bargaining’ to speed up prosecution

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The Deputy Special Prosecutor nominee, Madam Cynthia Lamptey, has proposed plea bargaining in prosecuting cases in court to curb unnecessary delays in the justice delivery system.

Appearing before the Appointments Committee during her vetting on Wednesday, she indicated that urgent steps should be taken to speed up justice delivery in the country. According to her, adjournments are used in delaying cases and that there must be regulation where a number of adjournments are specified to ensure effective and quality justice delivery.

Madam Lamptey, who has been a legal practitioner for close to three decades, said plea bargaining could be employed in trying criminal cases. She again said plea bargaining will shorten the period in handling cases and help clients in saving money.

In her statement, she indicated that “if you agree, depending on the issue of the case and plead for a lesser offence, it will save you”.

Touching on her work if she is approved, she said she is prepared to undertake all roles assigned to her by Mr. Martin Amidu who has been confirmed as the Special Prosecutor in order to ensure the success of the office.

According to her, her knowledge of Mr. Amidu’s work ethics would make it easy for her to work with him effectively at the new anti-graft agency.

Responding to a question on how she will co-exist with Mr. Amidu’s no-nonsense approach to work, she said “I have worked with him before and so I know how he works and who he is. You study the person and you know the person is temperamental so you also find ways to cooperate with him so that the work can be done”.

Mrs. Lamptey is a lawyer by profession and graduated from the Ghana School of Law. She was employed as a state attorney at the Attorney-General’s Department in 1995 and rose through the ranks till her appointment as the Director of Public Prosecutions during the John Mahama administration.

As the country’s chief prosecutor, she handled several high-profile prosecutions including the case of the alleged stealing of GH₵86.9 million by an Executive Director of the National Service Scheme and the criminal prosecution of Alfred Agbesi Woyome.

The Office of the Special Prosecutor was established under the Akufo-Addo government to deal with corrupt public officials.

Source: GhanaJustice/S.Ayisi