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Top Lawyer Proposes New Bill ...To Protect Unborn Generation

Published in News Wednesday, 11 October 2017 10:45

THE VULNERABLE & THE UNBORN PERSONS 
GUARDIAN & TRUSTEE ACT


A Bill Created by Nana Oppong

 

PREAMBLE

An ACT to establish the Vulnerable & The Unborn Persons Guardian & Trustee Authority, to act as guardian, trustee and lawful representative of the vulnerable and of the unborn of the nation.

 

PURPOSE
The purpose of this Act is to take effective, efficient, timely and just actions to secure the best interests, rights, opportunities and the welfare of the vulnerable and of the unborn of the nation and to prevent injurious, unjust and discriminatory treatment against them in all important matters, agreements, actions or proposed actions, laws and practices affecting the use or proposed use of national or community resources. The Act shall give power to the powerless; presence to the absent and voice to the voiceless.

 

SECTION 1

ESTABLISHMENT OF THE VULNERABLE & THE UNBORN PERSONS GUARDIAN & TRUSTEE AUTHORITY 

(1)  There is established by this Act, the Vulnerable & The Unborn Persons Guardian & Trustee Authority. 

(2)  The Authority is a body corporate with perpetual succession, a common seal and may sue and be sued in its corporate name. 

(3)  The Authority may acquire and hold any property. It may enter into any lawful agreement or conduct any transaction consistent with this Act.

 

SECTION 2

FUNCTIONS of the AUTHORITY

(1). The Authority, shall in co-ordination with the relevant institutions of state and other persons, including chiefs and heads of families in the nation, perform the following functions: 

a). Act as the Guardian, Trustee and Attorney for the unborn and the vulnerable of the nation. In this Act, the vulnerable include the poorest, the excluded and the marginalized of the nation.
b). Faithfully defend and prosecute the interest of the unborn and of the vulnerable in any project or event of interest. For this purpose, the Authority shall have the right to be present or to make representations into every important transaction, agreement, project, undertaking made by any person in the nation affecting the lands, waters, atmosphere, debts, assets, resources, welfare and development of the nation which affect or has the potential to affect the vulnerable and the unborn.

c). Advise the Government and the traditional authorities on the best policies and practices for the advancement and protection of the strategic interests of the vulnerable and the unborn in all matters affecting the use or proposed use of national resources.

d). Take any lawful action including scientific assessments by qualified professionals on any existing or proposed project to determine their impact on the rights, interests and welfare of the vulnerable and of the unborn.
e). Take any legal action including  the commencement of any proceeding(s) in any Court of competent jurisdiction, to prevent any person from taking any action or proposed action that offends this act or that is foreseeably offensive to or inconsistent with this act. The court may grant any remedy that it deems appropriate to give effect to this Act.

f). The Authority may issue injunctions or orders and it may impose costs, damages, fines or conditions or issue notices,  as deems fit against any person in order to give effect to this Act.

g). In the exercise of its mandate under this Act, the Authority shall have all the powers of the High Court under the Courts Act; and its orders may be enforced by any Court or any state institution or authority in order to give effect to this Act.

h). A panel of five members shall constitute the minimum number of persons for any decision under this Act. The decision of a panel shall be effective when it is made or approved unanimously or by the majority of the members.   
h). Any person aggrieved by the decision of the Authority may appeal the decision to the Court of Appeal with a further right of appeal to the Supreme Court.

 

(2) The Authority shall perform such other functions and may pass any regulations as it might deem necessary to faithfully and efficiently fulfill its mandate under this Act.

(3) Where the Authority fails or refuses to act when required under this Act, any citizen of the nation may commence proceedings in the High Court, with notice to the Authority, to enforce this Act and the Court may grant such reliefs as it deems just, to give effect to this Act.  

 

SECTION 3-
MEMBERSHIP
1). The Authority shall consist of a minimum of 13 persons representing all regions and constituents of the nation and chosen strictly on merit as the most qualified to carry out the functions in section 2 faithfully, efficiently and effectively. 3 members of the Authority shall be selected from the legislature, from the executive and from the judiciary. 
2). The Executive and the Legislature shall have the responsibility for the appointment of members in accordance with the Constitution.

3). The Authority shall consist of a Chairman, a vice chairman, a secretary; and all other members shall be called Trustees.

4). All members of the Authority shall serve for a term of five years and may not be removed for political, tribal, gender or other unlawful grounds. A member of the Authority may be removed only for good cause and in accordance with due process.
5). Any member of the Authority aggrieved by his dismissal may apply to the Supreme Court under its supervisory jurisdiction, for the appropriate relief(s).

SECTION 4

FUNDS

6). The Government shall provide sufficient funding and necessary resources to the Authority to enable it to carry its duties effectively and efficiently throughout, in accordance with the purpose and spirit of the Act.

 

Section 5
INDEPENDENCE

Except for apparent error of law on the record, clear breach of natural justice or any decision clearly inconsistent with this Act or the Constitution, the Authority shall not be subject to the direction or control of any person or authority, in the performance of its functions.

SECTION 6
DECLARATIONS & INTERPRETATIONS

  1. The natural resources and the assets of the nation belong to and are owned by all citizens of the nation including the unborn and the poorest, the weakest and the marginalized of the nation (referred to collectively as “the vulnerable”).
  2. The natural resources and assets of Stools, Skins and Families belong to and are owned by the rightful members of the community in accordance with custom and tradition. The Chiefs and Heads of Families hold all resources and assets in trust for the benefit of the rightful members of the community. The rightful members of the community include the vulnerable and the unborn.
  3. No agreement, transaction, project or undertaking shall be made by any person including the State, any Chief, or Head of Family, affecting the use or proposed use of national, Stool, Family or community resources that causes or is likely to cause significant or irreparable injuries to the interests, rights and welfare of the vulnerable and of the unborn.
  4. Any law, regulation, agreement, transaction, project, direction, guideline, order or undertaking made by any person that is inconsistent with this Act or that is made in contravention of this Act is unlawful and it shall be null and void to the extent of the inconsistency or to the extent of its contravention of this Act.
  5. All institutions of state; and all chiefs and heads of families, shall observe faithfully and strictly the provisions of this Act and they shall interpret the provisions of this Act liberally in order to help secure the purpose of the Act.
  6. The Courts, state institutions and all other authorities and persons, shall enforce all orders made by the Authority in accordance with the Act; and they shall interpret the provisions of this Act liberally in order to help secure the purpose of this Act without delays in the most effective and just manner.

 

No amendment of this Act shall be lawful unless at least three-quarters of eligible voters in the country approve of the amendment(s) in a referendum conducted in accordance with the Constitution.

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