The PBLN has had some incredible successes, both in attracting new lawyers to the network and in court defending clients.
In just one week in 2011, the PBLN was able to recruit forty eight new lawyers from nine regions in Ghana during the Annual General Meeting of the Ghana Bar Association. These lawyers immediately set about providing their expertise and knowledge, free of charge. Their clients, for the first time, were able to access legal services and justice, which is a basic human right.
And, the PBLN continues to go from strength to strength. In less than two years, the number of cases being referred to the PBLN has tripled, from 31 in 2011 to 104 in 2012.
In court, the PBLN has had some incredible successes. One of the most notable was the release of a remand prisoner, Harrison Dzubi, in 2012. Dzubi was convicted of a crime where the maximum sentence was three years, but he spent seven years in prison on remand, and was finally released in 2012 due to the efforts of the PBLN.
HRAC has also taken up the cases of six prisoners who have been held unlawfully for up to eight years on expired warrants. Five of these prisoners have now been released, and HRAC continues to fight against the practice of holding prisoners on expired warrants through public interest litigation.
Nana Oye Lithur, Executive Director of HRAC, meeting with lawyers from the PLBN