Former President John Mahama who re-contested the election on the ticket of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), took the Electoral Commission to court, challenging the validity of the Commission’s 9th December 2020 declaration of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as winner of the poll.
Mr. Mahama also contended in his petition that, President Akufo-Addo did not meet the constitutional threshold for election to the high office of president yet was so declared.
The Supreme Court’s judgment was supposed to address five issues that were set forth for determination, including the question of whether or not President Akufo-Addo met the constitutional threshold for election to the office of president.
The Issues are:
A.Whether or not the petition discloses any reasonable cause of action.
B. Whether or not based on the data contained in the declaration of the Electoral Commission of President Akufo-Addo as president-elect, no candidate obtained more than 50% of the valid votes casts as required by art.63 3 of the 1992 constitution.
C. Whether or not the 2nd respondent still met the Article 63(3) of the 1992 constitution threshold by the exclusion or inclusion of the Techiman South constituency presidential election results.D.Whether or not the declaration by the first respondent dated 9th of December 2020 of the results of the presidential election conducted on the 7th of December 2020 was in violation of Article 63(3) of the 1992 constitution.
E. Whether or not the alleged vote padding and other errors complained of by the petitioner affected the outcome of the presidential election results of 2020.
Also,the Chief Justice Anim Yeboah made it known that all the stated above issues holds if and only if, whether or not President Akufo-Addo met the constitutional threshold for election to the office of president.
KEY QUOTED LIVE POINTS
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says though the petitioner is not challenging the validity of the whole election organized, he is challenging the results.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says the petitioner is seeking an order to set aside C.I 135 and another order for a re-run to be organized.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says the petitioner is not challenging the data of the 1st Respondent upon which the declaration was made and therefore did not present any data.
- Election Petition: He (Anin-Yeboah) says according to the petitioner, the 1st Respondent was not fair to him when they failed to engage his representatives to correct alleged errors identified.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice, (Anin-Yeboah) moves to the argument by the 1st Respondent.
- Election Petition: He (Anin-Yeboah) says the EC maintains that although some errors were made it does not affect the declaration.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice Anin- Yeboah says the 2nd Respondent has described the petition as incompetent. They insist that President Akufo-Addo obtained more than 50% of the votes cast.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says the 2nd Respondent has asked for the petition to be dismissed because the petitioner has not challenged the validity of the polls conducted.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says based on the information presented, the court set up some issues for determining the case
- Election Petition: In a civil trial all that the court requires is evidence and proof – Chief Justice, Anin- Yeboah.
- Election Petition: He (Anin- Yeboah) says the burden of proof was on the petitioner to prove that the declaration of results was flawed.
- Election Petition: He (Anin-Yeboah) says initially the petitioner called only two witnesses and after that prayed the court to allow him to call a third witness. Chief Justice Anin Yeboah said the respondents disagreed but the court agreed
- Election Petition: He (Anin-Yeboah) says the testimony of the first witness was emphatic about why the petitioner was in court.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says PW1 and PW2 were not under any obligation to leave the strong room and should have ensured that their back up takes over when they were leaving.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says a candidate or an agent cannot abandon his post and ask the Supreme Court to rule when he fails to sign documents.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says all the attempt by the petitioner to object to this decision including asking to reopen his case were dismissed by the court.
- Election Petition: He (Anin Yeboah) says the argument that the petitioner had a weak case may not affect the case that there is reasonable cause.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says the source of this issue is the error made by the chairperson. He says there is no doubt that the Chairperson made a mistake when announcing the figures.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says the apex court is of the option that the Chairperson had a right to correct the mistake when it was noticed.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says at the time the petition was filed, the results of the Techiman South Constituency had been added.
- Election Petition: Chief Justice says by law, the burden of proof rested on the petition and an instrument put in place to regulate how a president is declared in Ghana.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says it is their opinion that the error made by the EC Chair and which did not affect the result is insufficient to say there was a violation of Article 63(3) of the 1992 Constitution
- Election Petition: Errors by the EC Chair cannot take away the valid votes of the people – Chief Justice.
- Election Petition: He (Chief Justice) says the petitioner also failed to back his claim that the declaration by the EC Chairperson was wrong.