Otiko Djaba, Director of Social Welfare cited for contempt in adoption case

Gender and Children’s Affairs Minister Otiko Afisa Djaba and the Director of Social Welfare have been cited for contempt of court over an adoption case involving two US-based couple.

The lawyer for the Applicants, Daniel Opare Asiedu is asking the court to jail the Minister and Daniel Nonah Gbeabu for refusing to respect a court ruling on the matter in December 2017.

The affidavit on the case, a copy of which is available to Adom News, indicates that the Applicants, Ethan Michael Ram and Hilary Holt Ram secured a Koforidua Circuit Court approval for the adoption of a child in Ghana (name withheld) back in February 2017.

The child is one of nine children of a single mother who, Joy News learnt, told the court she was burdened with taking care of them and was happy about the adoption.

In April 2017, the first Applicant arrived in Ghana to pick up the child but the Minister prevented him so he returned to the US without the child.

Later that year, the second Applicant also arrived in Ghana for the child and was met with the same fate with the excuse that the Ministry had placed a ban on adoptions.

Following the Minister’s refusal to have the child released, the lawyer for the couple proceeded to an Accra High Court, presided over by Justice J. K. Dorgu for a judicial review.

The judge later ruled that the Ministry has no mandate to ban adoptions, so the child should be given to the couple.

After the court ruling, steps were initiated by the Director of Social Welfare, Daniel Gbeawu to hand over the child to the new parents, but he later told them the Minister was going to file for a stay of execution so he must not release the child.

Till date, the child is being kept at the Osu Children’s Home, while the couple is back in the USA.

The Minister and the Director have therefore been sued for contempt of court and the applicants contend that if the two are not jailed, they will never obey the court order to hand over the child to them.

The case will be heard Monday, January 29, 2018.

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