IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF JUDICATURE
IN THE HIGH COURT (COMMERCIAL DIVISION),
ACCRA- A.D 2019
AFRICAN AUTOMOBILE - (Plaintiff)
ACCRA METROPOLITAN ASSEMBLY - (Defendant)
DATE: 13 TH MARCH, 2018
JUDGES: GEORGE K. KOOMSON JUSTICE OF THE HIGH COURT
AKAWARI ATINDEM FOR DEFENDANT/APPLICANT
SARFO BUABENG FOR PLAINTIFF/RESPONDENT
In this application the Defendant/Applicant prays for an order to set aside the amended entry of judgment, certificate of judgment and garnishee order nisi filed by the Plaintiff/Respondent. I gave my decision dismissing the application and reserved my reasons which I now proceed to give.
I have read the application and the supporting affidavit. I have also read the affidavit in opposition. Consideration has also been given to the affidavit filed by the registrar on the 12th July, 2017 upon the direction of the court in its enquiry as to which of the two judgments filed by the parties in support of their respective case was genuine.
Regard has also been given to Order 82(2) of C.I 47 and the written submissions filed by the parties.
The core contention of the applicant in this application is that the judgment upon which the respondent relied, in filing the amended Entry of Judgment, Certificate of judgment and Garnishee Order Nisi had been altered and thus does not represent the true judgment of the court. The applicant further states that the judgment relied on by them is made up of 11pages, however, the judgment relied on by the respondent is made up of 12 pages. According to the Applicant the holding in the judgment which the Respondent filed is remarkably different from the judgment which the Applicant has in its possession. The difference, according to the Applicant, is seen from the year the interest is to take effect and the interest rate.
It is noted that, the court being confronted with these two judgments, referred the matter to the trial judge, Her Ladyship Barbara Ackah-Yensu JA for her clarification through the Registrar of the Commercial Court. The Registrar conducted his enquiry and subsequently filed an affidavit on the 12th July, 2017. For the avoidance of doubt, I hereby quote verbatim the content of the Registrar’s affidavit with a view to put the records straight as follows:
I. That I am the deponent herein and Registrar of the High Court, Commercial Division, Accra.
II. That on the 27th of June, 2017, His Lordship Justice George Koomson of Commercial Court, Accra requested that I furnish him with a copy of the judgment in the above mentioned case which was delivered by Her Ladyship Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu (JA) on the 3rd day of March, 2009.
III. That parties in the above mentioned suit have annexed to their processes namely supplementary affidavit in support and affidavit in opposition to motion for an order to set aside entry of judgment filed on the 21st of June, 2017 and 22nd of June, 2017 by the Respondent and Applicant respectively.
Please see attached Exhibit ‘A’ and ‘B’ That based upon the said request by Justice George Koomson, I caused to be printed from our system a copy of the judgment in question and same is hereby attached and Marked as Exhibit ‘C’.
That further to this I contacted Her Ladyship Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu (JA) on the 11th of July, 2017 at her office at the Judicial Service Headquarters, Accra for verification of the judgment marked as Exhibit ‘C’
That Her Ladyship Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu (JA) sowed me her personal copy of the judgment requested by Justice George Koomson which she has in her custody. That upon comparing Exhibit ‘C’ by Her Ladyship Justice Barbara Ackah- Yensu (JA) with her personal copy, it realized that Exhibit ‘C’ is the same as the personal copy of Her Ladyship Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu (JA).
Therefore the judgment delivered by Justice Ackah-Yensu (JA) in Suit No.RPC/344/07 ARICAN AUTOMOBILE LTD v ACCRA METROPOLITAN ASSEMBLY is the Exhibit ‘C’ attached to this affidavit. An examination of the judgment which is in the possession of Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu (JA) and the judgment obtained from the system of the court i.e. the Court’s Official copy, shows that the two are the same. When the said judgments are compared with the two judgments filed by the parties, it is realised that the Court’s Official copy and the one in the possession of Her Ladyship Justice Ackah- Yensu (JA), are the same as the judgment exhibited and relied on by the Plaintiff/Respondent.
It is clear therefore that the judgment which the Defendant/Applicant has exhibited and being relied on in this application has been doctored and or falsified. I therefore reject the judgment which the Defendant/Applicant is relying on in this application as same has been falsified and doctored. It is my considered opinion that the amended entry of judgment, certificate of judgment and the garnishee order nisi based on the judgment which the Plaintiff/Respondent filed is proper and genuine. The said processes can therefore not be set aside.
From the foregoing, it can be said that the Defendant/Applicant has not completed payment of the judgment debt. If the debt is calculated by using the doctored or falsified judgment of the Court, as the Defendant/Applicant sought to do, it would appear that the Defendant/Applicant has completed payment of the judgment debt.
However, having found that the said judgment being relied on by the Defendant/Applicant has been falsified and therefore rejected, it would be wrong for the Defendant/Applicant to maintain that it has settled the judgment debt stated therein. The calculation of the debt should rather be based on the judgment exhibited by the Plaintiff/Respondent which the trial judge herself has confirmed as her true judgment and which also is the same as the official copy of the court in the court system. Accordingly, I hereby find that the judgment debt as stated on the amended entry of judgment filed by the Plaintiff/Respondent is the actual debt owed by the Defendant/Applicant and I so hold.
It was for these reasons that I dismissed the Defendant/Applicant’s application. I award to the Plaintiff/Respondent costs assessed at GH¢1,000.00 against Defendant/Applicant.