We are not the returning officer to be producing evidence of election results— Tsikata confronts the Supreme Court
We are not the returning officer to be producing evidence of election results
The Lead Counsel of the Petitioner, Tsatsu Tsikata has confronted a justice who asked him about the evidence of results the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has produced to declare that both the Petitioner and the second respondent did not reach the 50 plus one threshold.
According to him, there were discrepancies in the results declared by the Electoral Commission (EC) chairperson, Jean Mensa and expressed the need for the court to grant their motion to inspect the pink sheets that are in custody of the EC.
Mr Tsikata indicated that it is the Constitutional right for the petitioner to demand the results collated by the EC to enhance the transparency system adopted by the first Respondent in the discharge of her duties.
Touching on why it was necessary for the petitioner to inspect the pink sheets, he noted that granting them their request would boost the credibility of the EC as an institution and also bring the issue of paddling to an end.
Justice Yaw Apau who asked Mr Tsikata about the evidence his witnesses especially Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketia produced to the court to show that there was indeed paddling and discrepancies in the elections, Mr Tsikata stated that Mr Nketia was not a returning officer.
Thus, he stated was not part of his job to be presenting to the court an evidence of the results.
Referring to the 2013 rule by the Supreme Court, using Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo who was then a petitioner as a case study, Mr Tsikata indicated that the court did not grant the request of the petitioner to inspect the pink sheets on the grounds of President Akufo-Addo’s claim that there were irregularities in 145 constituencies.
He said the court ruled that it was obvious Nana Akufo-Addo had the pink sheets and it would be of no relevance to inspect the EC’s own.
Raising objection about Mr Tsikata’s request the Counsel of the first Respondent, Justine Amenuvor stated that the timing for the request was not appropriate and it prove malicious intent of the petitioner as the EC gave a time period for all those with grievances to inspect the results from his office which the petitioner failed to do so.
He observed that EC performed its Constitutional duties right and urged the Court to dismiss the request.
Mr Akoto Ampaw, the Lead lawyer for the Second Respondent, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo who supported the first Respondent lawyer claimed that all indications pointed that the petitioner had all the necessary documents in their disposal.
He said the “Transparency” word which was frequently used by Mr Tsikata was to induce the court to subject them into accepting his request while he and his witnesses failed to show any evidence to support their claim of paddling.