President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has nominated Gertrude Araba Esabaa Torkornoo, a Justice of the Supreme Court, as the next Chief Justice of Ghana.
Her nomination is subject to approval by Parliament.
When approved by Parliament, Justice Torkornoo will replace Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah, who retires as Chief Justice on May 24, this year, when he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 70 for justices of the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
In a letter to the Council of State, President Akufo-Addo said Justice Torkornoo who has been “on the Supreme Court for the last four (4) and has been a member of the Judiciary for the last nineteen (19) years is duly qualified and eminently fit to discharge the functions of Chief Justice.”
Justice Torkornoo will become the third female Chief Justice in history, following the footsteps of Justices Georgina Theodora Wood and Sophia Akuffo.
Justice Torkornoo will be President Akufo-Addo’s third appointment to the office of Chief Justice since he assumed office in January 2017.
Profile of Justice Gertrude Torkornoo
Gertrude Araba Esaaba Torkornoo (born 11 September 1962) is a Ghanaian judge. She was nominated to the Supreme Court in November 2019 and received parliamentary approval in December 2019. She was sworn in on 17 December 2019.
She has been on the bench in Ghana since 2004 and was appointed a Supreme Court judge in 2019. She was one of the first Justices of the Commercial Division of the High Court and has been active in the core reform agenda and activities of the Judiciary and Judicial Service of Ghana since 2005.
Early Life and Education
Gertrude Torkornoo hails from Winneba in the Central Region of Ghana. She attended Wesley Girls’ High School where she obtained her ordinary level certificate and Achimota School for her advanced level certificate.
She is an alumna of the University of Ghana and graduated from the Ghana School of Law in 1986.
In 2001 she obtained a Postgraduate Diploma in International Law and Organization from the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), part of Erasmus University in the Netherlands. In 2011, she graduated from Golden Gate University, USA with an LLM in Intellectual Property Law.
Prior to joining Fugar & Co., a law firm in Accra as an associate, Justice Torkornoo worked as a volunteer at the FIDA Legal Aid Service and did an internship with Nabarro Nathanson in London. She returned to the firm (Fugar & Co.) in 1994 to become a director.
In January 1997, she co-founded Sozo Law Consult where she worked as Managing Partner until 14 May 2004 when she was appointed a Justice of the High Court of Ghana.
She worked as a High Court judge until October 2012 when she was elevated to the Court of Appeal. Justice Torkornoo was nominated to the Supreme Court of Ghana in November 2019.
She was sworn into office on 17 December 2019