Election Petition Hearing: SC adjourns case to Tuesday Jan. 26

The Supreme Court has adjourned the hearing of the Election Petition to Tuesday January 26 after hearing hearing on Wednesday January 20.

The petitioner in the 2020 Presidential Election Petition, John Dramani Mahama, has sought a review a ruling on some 12 questions he wanted the 1st Respondent Electoral Commission to answer.

The court had earlier dismissed an application filed by the Petitioner Mr Mahama seeking some answers from the Chair of the Electoral Commission (EC).

Lawyer for the petitioner on Wednesday told the court at the beginning of hearing that he has come to seek a review of the ruling on their application for interrogatories the previous day.

The court ruled that “the crucial issue of relevancy has not been established in this Application” emphasizing the various amendments that have been made to the Court Procedures and Rules, the latest being C.I 99.

“We are strictly bound by C.I 99 and therefore will not apply Order 22 of C.I 47 OF 2004 in this circumstance.

“We accordingly refuse to grant the application and same is accordingly dismissed”, the court ruled.

Justice can’t be sacrificed for expedition – Tsikata to SC

Counsel for the petitioner in the ongoing 2020 Presidential Election Petition, Tsatsu Tsikata, has told the Supreme Court that much as the court may want to stick to the timelines specified in C.I 99 for the adjudication of election petitions, it should not be done in disregard of justice.

Tsikata was reacting to orders by the court for parties file their witness statements by 12 noon Thursday, January 21, a timeline the lawyer deemed too short.

READ ALSO:  Supreme Court judgement on election petition 'unanimous'

According to him, the Supreme Court’s insistence of such a short timeline is not justified in law.

But the bench explained the modification of the law which culminated in C.I 99 requires the court to operate within strict timelines, a requirement the court cannot compromise.

The bench was also of the view that lawyers should have known that they will be required to file witness statements and that those should have been prepared ahead of time.

Dissatisfied Tsatsu Tsikata told the court, adherence to those timelines should not injure justice

Mahama seeks review of ruling on interrogatories applications

The petitioner in the 2020 Presidential Election Petition, John Dramani Mahama, has sought a review a ruling on some 12 questions he wanted the 1st Respondent Electoral Commission to answer.

Lawyer for the petitioner on Wednesday told the court at the beginning of hearing that he has come to seek a review of the ruling on their application for interrogatories the previous day. The court ruled that “the crucial issue of relevancy has not been established in this Application” emphasizing the various amendments that have been made to the Court Procedures and Rules, the latest being C.I 99.

“We are strictly bound by C.I 99 and therefore will not apply Order 22 of C.I 47 OF 2004 in this circumstance. We accordingly refuse to grant the application and same is accordingly dismissed”, the court ruled.

But the petitioner does not seem satisfied with the ruling and has thus served notice of seeking a review.

Here are some highlights as is happening in court on Day 3:

READ ALSO:  [Video] Mahama's application to re-open case dismissed

  • The seven-member panel of Supreme Court Judges hearing the petition include Chief Justice Anin-Yeboah, Justices Yaw Appau, Marful Sau, Professor Ashie Kotei, Mariama Owusu, Nene Amegatcher, and Gertrude Tokonor.
  • Ahead of Wednesday’s hearing, the petitioner has put forward a request to have his lawyers inspect documents in the custody of the Electoral Commission
  • The documents include constituency presidential election results collation sheets and summary  sheets.
  • John Mahama’s legal team also want to be allowed to have copies of these documents, numbering about six.
  • 3News sources say the petitioner may appeal the Tuesday ruling of the SC.
  • The SC judges have asked the lawyers to announce themselves.
  • NDC General Secretary has been asked by the court where the Lawyer for the Petitioner is. He is not seen in court.
  • The NDC Scribe say he is a the Registry.
  • Lawyers for Respondents introduce themselves as Lawyer Tsikata makes entry
  • He apologises for his lateness and explains why he is.
  • Counsel for John Mahama proceeds to say he has just filed a memorandum of issues. He is also filing an application for a review of the ruling of Tuesday.
  • The SC Judges respond by asking for copies of the documents Lawyer Tsikata has filed.
  • The court meanwhile goes on break or recess to have the Memorandum of Issues considered
  • Court is back from recess
  • Court makes orders 
  • Hearing on the petition will fully start on Tuesday 26th January, 2020
  • Tsatsu Tsikata says he is not clear by preliminary objections raised so far.
  • The Court however says they will be typed and made available to the parties
  • Lawyer Tsatsu Tsikata argues, there are outstanding request filed and issues to be discussed.
  • SC says he should apply for such issues to be included as additional one.
  • Lawyer Tsatsu Tsikata argues, the timeline provided to have witness statements is not justified.
  • The court goes ahead to adjourn proceedings to Tuesday 26th January.

By 3news.com|Ghana

]]>
READ ALSO:  Petitioner's 3rd witness, Rojo Mettle gives out-of-court testimony due to ill health