Government has been urged to rethink and restructure its arbitration procedures in order to save the state from incurring avoidable judgment debts.
Several disputes involving the government of Ghana and its international investors and partners in commerce have resulted in the country being saddled with huge debts.
Associate professor at the faculty of law of the Thompson Rivers University in Canada says governments have failed to settle some of their arbitration awards, adding further delays will increase the debt situation of the country.
Professor Richard Frimpong Oppong was speaking at the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences Inaugural Lecture in Accra.
The lecture was under the theme: ‘’The Government of Ghana and International Arbitration.’’
“Once an arbitration claim is made against the government, it must actively engage in all aspects of the proceedings.
“There have been instances in which the government’s participation in arbitration proceedings have been unsatisfactory,” he said.
He posited there is the need to appoint persons knowledgeable in Ghanaian law or persons from legal systems akin to the Ghanaian legal system as arbitrators for the government.
“The instances in the past in which government failed to exercise its right to appoint an arbitrator should be avoided in the future.
He said there is the need to engage local counsel or firms with expertise in international arbitration to complement the work of the AG’s department.
Professor Richard Frimpong Oppong wants the AG to repose confidence in local counsel and firms when it comes to dealing with international arbitration claims.