Election petition: Supreme Court’s judgment is an “aberration” - Tsatsu Tsikata

Election petition: Supreme Court’s judgment is an “aberration” - Tsatsu Tsikata

-The apex court dismissed the petition challenging the outcome of the 2020 elections

-John Mahama contended in the petition that there was no winner in the election and that a rerun must be ordered between him and President Nana Akufo-Addo

-But, the court disagreed

-His lead counsel said the judgment of the court is an aberration

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Legal luminary, Tsatsu Tsikata, the lead counsel for John Mahama in the just ended 2020 election petition trial, for the first time spoke about the judgment of the Supreme Court, describing it as a “dangerous precedent.”

Speaking on the KSM Show on Pan African TV on Sunday, March 14, 2021, he said what the judgment meant was that in any future, a chairperson of the Electoral Commission and the returning officer in the presidential elections can make a declaration with “numbers which nobody can really explain.”

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Election petition: Supreme Court’s judgment is an “aberration” - Tsatsu Tsikata
Election petition: Supreme Court’s judgment is an “aberration” - Tsatsu Tsikata...Photo credit: Kojo Oppong Nkrumah
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The Supreme Court on March 4, 2021, dismissed former President Mahama’s challenge to the 2020 presidential election results in the election petition trial.

Akufo-Addo defeated Mahama in the said election to secure another four-year term; collecting 51.302% of the votes cast against the latter’s 47.359%.

The votes difference between the two candidates stood at 517, 231, representing a four percentage point, one of the highest since 1996.

Mahama petitioned the apex court, praying it to annul the results declared by the chairperson of the EC, Jean Mensa.

According to him, there was no winner in the election, and that a rerun must be ordered between him and President Nana Akufo-Addo.

However, the seven-member panel rejected his plea, stating that the former president failed to adduce “cogent evidence” to back his claims that there was no winner in the December 7, 2020, presidential elections.

The judgment of the Supreme Court, according to Tsikata, will, in the long run, be seen as “aberration.” “They won’t stand the test of time in my view but we will see,” he stated.

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The court set up five issues for determining the case and they include;

1. Whether or not the petition discloses any reasonable cause of action

2. Whether or not based on the data contained in the declaration of the 1st Respondent (EC), no candidate obtained more than 50% of the valid votes cast as required by Article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution

3. Whether or not the 2nd Respondent still met Article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution threshold by the exclusion or inclusion of the Techiman South constituency Presidential Election Results of 2020

4. Whether or not the declaration by the 1st Respondent dated the 9th of December violated Article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution.

5. 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.

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