Three distinguished female lawyers have been honoured for their various roles in the maritime boundary dispute between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire at the Special Chamber of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), which Ghana won.
They are former Attorney-General (A-G) and Minister of Justice, Mrs Betty Mould Iddrisu, immediate past A-G and Minister of Justice, Mrs Marietta Brew Appiah-Opong and the current A-G and Minister of Justice, Ms Gloria Afua Akuffo.
In an interview with Ms Akuffo after the awards, she commended her predecessors, Mrs Iddrisu and Mrs Appiah-Oppong for the roles they played to bring the case this far before she took over as A-G.
In a response after receiving a plaque from the African Women Lawyers Association (AWLA), she commended the association for recognising their contributions to the success of the case.
She commended her immediate predecessor, Mrs Appiah-Oppong for agreeing to join the government’s team despite their political differences.
She also commended President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the former President, Mr John Dramani Mahama, for giving them the opportunities to serve their countries.
A win for all
Mrs Iddrisu, the first female A-G and Minister of Justice, for her part, dedicated her award to all female lawyers, saying it was a challenge for the young ones to strive for higher heights.
A citation read for her said her unflinching commitment towards women’s empowerment led to the establishment of Ghana’s first legal aid in 1985 and the formation of AWLA.
Mrs Appiah-Oppong, for her part, said the success chalked up at ITLOS showed that women were competent and capable in whatever task they were given “when we put our whole mind to it”.
She said the win at ITLOS was for the whole country and not a political affair.
The Executive Director of AWLA, Mrs Edna Kuma, who presented glass plaques to the three female lawyers, said AWLA was celebrating them for the distinguished roles they played and for their participation in the resolution of the boundary dispute at various levels.
“We celebrate them because they are women and lawyers, to show that women have the interest of this nation at heart as much as men,” she said.
Ghana, on Saturday, September 23, 2017, emerged victorious in its three-year-long maritime boundary dispute with Cote d’Ivoire.
The Special Chamber of the ITLOS constituted to hear the dispute unanimously declared that Ghana had not violated Cote d’Ivoire’s sovereign rights with its oil exploration activities.