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Election 2020

We Cannot Allow EC To Run Away From Cross-Examination – Tsatsu Tsikata

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Lead counsel for John Dramani Mahama, Tsatsu Tsikata has accused the Electoral Commission Chairperson, Jean Mensa of evading cross-examination.

This was after lawyers for the EC and President Akufo-Addo had indicated that they do not intend to open their defence or call witnesses.

The submission by the counsels for the 1st and 2nd Respondent follows the cross-examination of three witnesses testifying on behalf of the 2020 NDC presidential candidate.

Mr. Mahama had filed witness statements for the NDC’s General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, Dr. Kpessa-Whyte and Rojo Mettle-Nunoo.

These individuals were subsequenly cross-examined by lawyers for President Akufo-Addo and the EC.

Following the discharge of Rojo Mettle-Nunoo, Lawyer Tsikata informed the court that the petitioner had closed his case.

But in an interesting twist, the lawyers for the respondents who had already indicated that they will call one witness each told the court they have rescinded that decision.

The two counsels argued that the evidence presented by the witnesses for the petitioner and from cross-examination does not support the reliefs being requested by Mr. Mahama in the petition filed.

Citing Order 36 Rule 43 and C.I 87 rule 3 (e) 5, lead counsel for the EC, Justin Amenuvor told the 7-member panel of judges that the EC was satisfied with proceedings so far and asked the court to make a determination on the petition before it.

But Tsatsu Tsikata disagreed.

He alleged that the move by the 1st and 2nd Respondents is a deliberate attempt by the EC Chairperson, Jean Mensa to avoid cross examination which will expose the illegalities that characterised the December 7 elections.

Explaining further, Lawyer Tsikata also said the request by the counsel for the Respondent was not in line with Order 36 Rule 43 and CI 87 rule 3 (e) 5 as stated.

But the judges sided with the respondents, adding that the witnesses cannot be compelled to testify.

The case has since been adjourned to Tuesday, February 9 for legal arguments on whether or not the respondents can opt not to call witnesses.

Source: MyJoyOnline

Election 2020

Mahama’s Petition Is So Weak, It Shouldn’t Have Been Heard – Akoto Ampaw’s Final Address To The Supreme Court

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Lawyers for President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo have prayed the Supreme Court to dismiss the Petitioner’s case as it discloses no reasonable cause of action.

President Nana Addo said “our submission is that the petition is frivolous and discloses no reasonable cause of action remains unshaken, notwithstanding the evidence led in aid of the Petition.

In fact, the woeful performance of the Petitioner’s witnesses during their respective cross-examination has further buttressed our position that the instant Petition with all due respect, ought not to have proceeded to trial.”

In the second respondent’s closing address filed at the Supreme Court, Nana Addo said the Election Petition was one that in all shape and form relate to an attack on the process for the conduct of the presidential election itself.

“In the instant matter, it is clear on the face of the Petition and indeed the evidence of Mr. Asiedu Nketia in particular that the Petitioner was not in court to challenge the validity of the election but the case concerns the performance of the function 1st respondent (EC) and its Chairperson pertaining to the declaration of the Presidential election of December 2020, shows that the petition is not an election Petition properly so-called.”

The second respondent argued that from the Petitioner’s reliefs he did not contest the propriety of the conduct of the elections hence his call for another election between him and the Petitioner.

According to the second respondent even though from the reliefs of the Petitioner that, no one had 50 percent of the total number of valid votes cast in the Election and there seek a ” second election with the Petitioner and the second respondent as a candidate…”, the Petitioner did not indicate his percentage or number of votes in the December 7, 2020 polls.

“Not having pleaded these fundamental material facts and no evidence having been led on same, it is our humble submission that this Petition does not qualify to be an election Petition.”

Incidentally, the Petitioner has also not contested any of the EC processes when it’s come to the process of voting, counting of votes, and declaration of results at polling stations among others.

The second respondent says that, the instant Petition belongs to the class of actions that could be best described as “suits challenging the declaration” rather than the validity of the election itself.

“The court is invited to hold that no challenge of the conduct of the election is stated from paragraph one to 30 of the Petitioner’s Petition.

Nana Addo held that Article 64 (1) of the Constitution set out the criteria for the invocation of the Supreme Court’s original jurisdiction on the conduct of a presidential election.

“The Supreme Court, therefore, is not, clothed with jurisdiction to entertain any matter clothed with apparel of presidential election Petition when in fact it is not.”

The second respondent said based on the evaluation of facts and the law, in terms of Mr Asiedu Nketia, one of the Petitioner’s witnesses, the Court’s jurisdiction has not been properly invoked.

The second respondent said it was not in dispute that a summation of the total valid votes announced by the EC Chairperson, Mrs. Jean Mensa as having obtained by the 12 candidates yielded a total of 13,121,111.

“Apart from the fact that this figure is incontrovertible, Petitioner failed or refused to provide any contrary evidence that would establish or least suggest that the valid votes declared for the 12 candidates were erroneous.

The second respondent argues that apart from reproducing the figures declared by the EC Chairperson and making fanciful analogies based on her innocuous errors, the Petitioner failed to provide his own data or independently attained figures to controvert what was declared as the valid votes obtained by each of the 12 candidates.

Nana Addo, therefore, prays the court to ignore allegations of arbitrariness and lack of transparency in the National Collation Centre, saying that “these allegations are of little probative value.”

Source: GNA

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Election 2020

Election Petition: Another Error Discovered In Tsikata’s Closing Address To The Supreme Court

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What was supposed to be a petition challenging an alleged error in the declaration made by the chairperson of the Electoral Commission on December 9 2020, turned out to be itself riddled with errors as has been seen since the 2020 election petition hearing commenced.

The first error was identified by the lawyers for the 2nd respondent, when they identified that the original petition was actually praying the court for a runoff between John Mahama and Jean Adukwei Mensa, the chairperson of the EC.

Having been granted leave to amend the error in the petition against the argument of the 1st and 2nd respondents, the amended petition also turned out with an error.

Yet another error has been identified in the petitioner’s final closing address to the Supreme Court, in which the petitioner claims to have filed his petition on 30th December 2021 even though we are still in February 2021.

It is unclear if the counsel for the petitioner will pray the court for another leave to amend their closing address.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court is expected to deliver their verdict on March 4 2021.

Source: GhanaFeed.Com

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Election 2020

Order A Re-run Of Election 2020 Because Jean Mensa Refused To Explain ‘Changing Figures’ – Tsikata Tells Supreme Court

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Lawyers for the petitioner in the on-going election petition has charged the Supreme Court to  rule in favour of John Mahama who wants a re-run of the Presidential elections.

The petitioner’s legal team led by Tsatsu Tsikata pointed out that once the first respondent (Electoral Commission) has failed to testify, the court should not think twice when giving out it ruling.

According to them, there is no evidence from the EC on the basis of which any of its contradictory figures presented on December 9, last year, can be accepted as truth.

Mr Tsikata believes the EC Chairperson Jean Mensa was given a fair opportunity to mount the witness box and tell the world what the actual total valid votes cast in the elections were, but she declined.

“First respondent has not discharged the burden of proof on it to show the error allegedly made by the EC on December 9, and the purported correction on December 10 or any other figure derived from results it has published.

“No basis exists for any Trier of fact to consider that first respondent has even discharged “the burden of producing evidence under section 11 of the Evidence Act.

“The obligation of the first respondent to introduce sufficient evidence to avoid a ruling against him has not been simply met because first respondent decided not to have anyone testify on their behalf.

“No evidence is therefore, available for the first respondent to avoid a ruling against it,” as captured in the closing address filed on February 23, 2021.

The petitioner has maintained that the non compliance by the Chairperson is a serious infraction of a constitutional instrument, for which she wields her power.

Also, the petitioner said the EC’s lawyers failed to provide evidence to contradict the testimony of their first witness, NDC General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia with regards to the percentage of votes obtained by each candidate.

They, again, maintained that the petitioner does not need to lead evidence to show that no candidate obtained more than 50% of the votes.

He need not come to court with his own figures, as they were not in court “to take the job of the Returning Officer”.

Source: TheGhanaReport

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