The landlords whose property was destroyed by some four Chinese nationals through galamsey activities have applied for a stay of the High Court order ordering the deportation of the Chinese. The four had been found guilty of using fraudulent means to validate their continued stay in the country and worked without permit.
The four – Wen Shi Li, Huang Shen Jun, Li De Hao, and Lan Hai Song – had been involved in illegal mining operations on a 40-acre land of the Seidu Fanzia School, based in Obuasi, before their arrest. Subsequently, the Kumasi High Court ruled that the four persons be deported.
However, the plaintiffs have indicated their intention to appeal the High Court ruling, citing dissatisfaction over the failure of the court to grant some reliefs they sought, including monetary compensation for the land that was destroyed.
The lawyer for the landowners, Mr. Hansen Koduah told Dennislaw News in an exclusive interview that when the defendants applied for bail, the Court requested documents on their stay in the country which revealed that they were present in the country illegally. It was on this basis that the court ordered that they be deported, without considering the main issues that had been presented for trial.
“…we instituted action against them, and in the course of the trial, the court ordered that they should deposit their passports and all those things as a condition for bail. Unfortunately, when their documents were submitted, the court realized that their resident permit had expired. It was on the basis of that, that the court said that they were to be deported,” Lawyer Koduah explained.
He added that while his outfit does not have any problem with the court finding their stay in Ghana illegal, they remained concerned over the fact that these Chinese nationals have committed civil liabilities and are being left to go for free without paying for the damages they’ve caused, especially when they have gotten tremendous amounts of resources on the vast acreage of land that has now been destroyed.
“…do we just allow them to go, having mined resources so much from the land and the court is simply saying that despite the fact that you have caused such destruction to these people, go to your country without compensating these people? That is what we are saying no. the decision of the court was not bad, but to the extent that the court said that they should simply go without even paying for what they have destroyed is the basis of our complaint … and that is the basis of our application for stay,” he told Dennislaw News.
As part of the reliefs sought in the appeal, Lawyer Koduah has noted that his clients want the Court of Appeal to order the trial judge at the Kumasi High Court to hear the substantive matters of the original case that was filed, and subsequently pronounce a judgment on it before the Chinese are deported.
“If we do not file the appeal, the Immigration [Service] would have to send them or deport them. So the appeal and the stay will stop the immigration from deporting them,” he explained.
The motion is expected to be moved before the court on June 15, 2020.