Lawyers for the Electoral Commission as well as President Akufo-Addo will this morning advance legal arguments on their decision not to call up witnesses in the ongoing election petition hearing.
Lead Counsel for the EC, Justine Amenuvor moved in Court yesterday, to the surprise of many, that the Returning Officer in the December Presidential poll, Jean Mensa, would not be taking the witness box for cross-examination.
Likewise, lead counsel for President Nana Akufo-Addo, Akoto Ampaw also announced that the New Patriotic Party’s 2020 Campaign Manager, Peter Mac Manu would not be taking the stand.
Mr. Ampaw argued that the petitioner has not been able to make a solid case in court hence the decision to close their case.
This is notwithstanding that both respondents had earlier filed witness statements in the respective names of these witnesses.
Lead counsel for Mr. Mahama, Tsatsu Tsikata had accused Mrs. Mensa of evading cross-examination.
The potential cross-examination of the EC Chair was one of the more anticipated parts of the petition.
The President of the Court, Chief Justice Anin-Yeboah thus directed the lawyers to make legal submissions on the matter.
What their witness statement’s said
Mrs. Mensa, in her election petition witness statement, maintained that President Akufo-Addo was the legitimate winner of the 2020 elections.
She asserted that the commission did not pad President Akufo-Addo’s votes as alleged by Mr. Mahama.
Mrs. Mensa also insisted that President Akufo-Addo obtained more than the 50% of the valid votes cast, which is required to win the election.
Mr. Mac Manu, in his witness statement, also said the petition is based on mere conjecture.
He feels the foundation of these arguments are “insignificant inaccuracies and slips in the declaration of the results of the election, rather than the validity of the election and the actual results thereof.”
He also said the election petition is “a ruse and a face-saving gimmick” by Mr. Mahama following his election loss.
Mr. Mahama’s argument is that neither he nor President Akufo-Addo attained a clear majority during the 2020 polls because of the omission of the Techiman South constituency from the declaration.
He is asking the Supreme Court to order a re-run of the presidential election for him and the incumbent.