Election petition: Supreme Court ‘shocks’ petitioner’s counsel [Audio]

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A member of John Mahama’s legal team, Dr Dominic Anyine, was surprised at the decision by the Supreme Court not to allow the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Mrs Jean Mensa to mount the witness box

In his view, there is a “predetermined agenda” by the Apex Court to rule against the petitioner in the ongoing election petition.

His remarks follow a unanimous decision by the Supreme Court to dismiss an application by lawyers for the petitioner that sought leave to reopen his case and subpoena Mrs Mensa.

According to the judges, the arguments put forward by Mr Mahama’s legal team for the EC boss to take the witness stand were erroneous.

The Supreme Court held the view that since Mrs Mensa is not on trial she cannot be compelled to adduce evidence in court despite the filing of her witness statement.

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But, addressing the media after the hearing on Tuesday, Dr Anyine noted his disagreement with the Apex Court’s decision.

According to him, one of the five key issues being adjudicated on makes the EC Chairperson a party to the suit, as such, it is questionable why the panel is trying to expunge four of the issues.

“I am surprised that the Supreme Court itself, having set down five key issues to be determined is now reducing the issues to one, which is, the extent to which the evidence we have laid shows that no one got more than 50%+1 of the votes.

“But we made it abundantly clear in the petition that there were a number of infractions, we are contesting even the constitutionality of the declaration that was made. We are saying that Jean Mensa violated Article 23 of the constitution because she is an administrative body. We have also said her exercise of discretion was contrary to Article 296 of the constitution,” he highlighted.

Dr Ayine also noted that: “These are all germane issues under the constitution and laws of Ghana and to reduce the petition into a single issue petition is rather unfortunate and smacks of a predetermined agenda to rule against the petitioner in this matter.”

Dr Anyine, however, stated that the petitioners are bound to comply with the judgement of the Apex Court though it may not have gone in their favour.

“In our view the court was wrong. In our view, the reasons of the court were based upon wrong legal premises. But the Supreme Court is the final justice when it comes to the law and we are bound by what it has said. We cannot depart from it,” he said.

Dr Anyine disclosed that the lead counsel for the petitioner, Tsatsu Tsikata, will be filing an application for review of the Supreme Court’s earlier decision rendered on February 11 with respect to whether the EC can be compelled to mount the witness box.


Source
Adwoa Adubia News

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