All is set for the Supreme Court’s judgment in the election petition filed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) 2020 presidential candidate, John Dramani Mahama, tomorrow.
But ahead of the judgment, The Herald, has picked up information that some of the lawyers, had wanted to orally address the court, but their request had been turned down by the panel which has the Chief Justice, Kwasi Anin Yeboah, presiding with six other judges.
It is unclear, why the lawyers were denied the opportunity to speak to their written addresses and give clarifications on some of the issues which might need clarity, if the need arises.
Some have argued the denial of the opportunity to address the apex court means that the panel which has Justices; Yaw Appau, Marful Sau, Nene Amegatcher, Prof. Ashie Kotey, Mariama Owusu and Gertrude Torkonoo, are satisfied with what both the petitioners and the respondents’ lawyers have presented to them, hence ready with their verdict.
At the last sitting of the court, the Chief Justice, had responded to a question from Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, whether the lawyers could be allowed to orally address the court, after filing their written address, saying they could be called to do so for clarification, if the need arises, but the report picked up by The Herald suggests that, the need had not been occasioned, so the court is delivering its judgement tomorrow.
Meanwhile, the NDC, has urged party faithful to remain calm as the Supreme Court takes a decision on the petition filed by its 2020 presidential candidate.
The advice comes after the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) held an emergency meeting on Monday.
The committee expressed faith that the apex court will uphold the will of the people and ensure the 2020 election results announced by the EC Chairperson Jean Mensa is overturned, in Mahama’s favour.
A statement issued by the NDC General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, at the end of the emergency NEC meeting on Monday reads:
“Finally, as Ghanaians await the verdict of the Supreme Court on the election petition, NEC urges all NDC members and supporters to remain calm and resolute.
“It is the prayer of NEC that the Supreme Court will uphold and promote probity, accountability, and transparency, and give effect to the will of the people expressed on December 7, 2020, in its judgement on the matter.”
That notwithstanding, the party said, “it will stop at nothing to rid the Jean Mensa-led commission of its partisan biases and prejudices, and ensure transparency and fairness in national elections”.
The apex court has set March 4 to make a determination of the petition challenging the declaration of the NPP presidential candidate Nana Akufo-Addo as winner of the 2020 December 7 polls.
Among other things, the petition filed by the NDC Flagbearer wants the apex court to order a rerun of the elections held in December last year.
Reliefs sought by Mr Mahama
(a) A declaration that Mrs. Jean Adukwei Mensa, Chairperson of first respondent and the Returning Officer for the Presidential Elections held on December 7, 2020 was in breach of Article 63(3) of the 1992 Constitution in the declaration she made on December 9, 2020, in respect of the Presidential Election that was held on December 7, 2020
(b) A declaration that based on the data contained in the declaration made by Mrs. Jean Adukwei Mensa, Chairperson of first respondent and the Returning Officer for the Presidential Elections held on December 7, 2020, no candidate satisfied the requirement of Article 63(3) of the 1992 Constitution to be declared President-elect
(c) A declaration that the purported declaration made on December 9, 2020 ‘of the results of the Presidential Election by Mrs. Jean Adukwei Mensa, Chairperson of first Respondent and the Returning Officer for the Presidential Elections held on December 7, 2020, is unconstitutional, null and void and of no effect whatsoever
(d) An order annulling the Declaration of President-Elect Instrument, 2020 (C.1. 135) dated December 9, 2020, issued under the hand of Mrs. Jean Adukwei Mensa, Chairperson of first respondent and the Returning Officer for the Presidential Elections held December 7, 2020, and gazetted on December 10, 2020
(e) An order of injunction restraining the second respondent from holding himself out as President-elect
f) An order of mandatory injunction directing the first respondent to proceed to conduct a second election with Petitioner and second respondent as the candidates as required under Articles 63(4) and (5) of the 1992 Constitution