Presidential candidate aspirant of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), Hon Joe Ghartey, has congratulated President Nana Akufo-Addo and Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, on the affirmation of their victory in the December 7, 2020 general elections by the Supreme Court of Ghana.
Hon. Ghartey, a former Minister of Railways Development, has also congratulated the legal team of the NPP who worked diligently to ensure the President’s victory in Court.
“Congratulations to the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia on the affirmation of their victory in the 2020 general elections by the Supreme Court.
To the industrious legal team who worked diligently to see this victory through, I say to you, Ayekoo”, Hon. Ghartey who is the Member of Parliament for Essikado-Ketan Constituency wrote on Facebook shortly after the Apex Court ruled in favor of Mr. Akufo-Addo.
The Supreme Court, the highest court of jurisdiction in Ghana, ruled on Thursday, March 4, 2021, that indeed, Mr. Akufo-Addo won the December 7, 2020 Presidential Election.
The Court further ruled that results declared on December 9, 2020 despite the initial inadvertent error reflected the will of the people of Ghana and therefore could not be overturned simply on the basis of the error made by the Electoral Commission (EC) during the declaration.
In its ruling the Supreme Court dismissed the Petitioner, 2020 Presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama’s ” as without merit.”
Chief Justice, Justice Kwasi Anim Yeboah, who presided over the seven-member panel of justices, pronouncing the Court’s verdict in packed court, said petitioner failed to demonstrate that the errors made by the first respondent, the EC, changed the results of the elections.
The Court in a unanimous decision, further held that, Mr Mahama cannot demand it (Court) to rely on the error of using total votes cast instead of total valid votes as a basis for calling for run-off election between him and President Nana Akufo-Addo.
It was the ruling of the Supreme Court that it was established during the trial that the total valid votes of the election is 13,121,111.
Going by the total valid votes as mentioned above, the Court said Mr Akufo-Addo obtained over 50% of the total valid votes as mandated by the Constitution, hence he was validly elected.
Furthermore, it was the ruling of the Supreme Court that Mr. Mahama failed to substantiate his allegation of vote padding in favor of Mr Akufo-Addo.
According to the Apex Court of Ghana, although vote padding is a serious issue, the alleged figures of 4,693 did not affect the outcome of the election.
As a result, the Supreme Court ruled that it did not see the need to order a rerun as the petitioner, Mr. Mahama pleaded.
The Court began proceedings at 10:00am on Thursday morning, March 4, in the national capital, Accra.
During the hearing, Mr Mahama called three witnesses – Dr Michael Kpessa Whyte, Joseph Robert Mettle-Nunoo, both members of the National Democratic Congress, and Johnson Asiedu Nketia, General Secretary of the Party.
The Supreme Court determined among other things, whether there was any legal grounds for the petition and whether or not President Akufo-Addo met the Article 63(3) threshold set out in the 1992 Constitution.
Article 63(3) stipulates that a presidential candidate must obtain 50 per cent of the total valid votes cast plus one vote before the candidate is declared president elect.
The Supreme Court also determined whether or not the declaration by the EC on December 9, 2020 was in violation of Article 63(3) and also whether or not the alleged vote padding and other errors complained about by the Petitioner affected the outcome of the presidential election results of December 9, 2020.
Mr Mahama failed to have the Chairperson of the EC, Jean A. Mensa, mount the witness box. On a number of occasions, he had his applications dismissed by the Supreme Court.
Mr Mahama’s dismissed applications include: application for interrogatories, application for stay of proceedings, application for the Petitioner to re-open his case and subpoena the EC Boss for cross examination, and application for review of the Court’s decisions.
The two respondents declined to testify after the Petitioner had closed his case.
Lawyer Akoto Ampaw, Lead Counsel for President Akufo-Addo, had told the apex Court that: “We do not intend to call any witnesses to satisfy the burden of proof.”
The lead counsel of the EC , Justine Amenuvor, held that there was sufficient evidence before the Court after the Petitioner had called in three witnesses and closed his case.