The petitioner in the ongoing election petition John Dramani Mahama has filed for a review of the Supreme Court’s ruling on reopening their case.
The petitioner’s legal team led by Tsatsu Tsikata filed the application on Saturday, insisting that the court should grant them audience to reopen case.
Explaining the need for reopening, Counsel for Mr Mahama said he was taken by surprise when the respondents (Electoral Commission and Nana Akufo-Addo) announced closure of their case.
Mr Tsikata said the petitioner’s team had been assured of the respondent’s witnesses mounting the witness box since it had stated earlier in its sworn affidavits.
He wants the court to treat the EC Chairperson Jean Mensa as a hostile witness.
A hostile witness, also known as an adverse witness or an unfavourable witness is a witness whose testimony on direct examination is either openly antagonistic or appears to be contrary to the legal position of the party who called the witness.
Making a case for reopening, Mr Tsikata reiterated that the petitioner closed his case because the EC Chairperson, in her affidavit, had assured the court that she will make herself available for cross examination.
That assurance, he pointed out led to the dismissal of the petitioner’s interrogatories application, which sought to ask the EC Chairperson 12 key questions it claimed were critical to the case.
“We had the expectation that the chairperson of the first respondent (Jean Mensa) will testify hence the closure of the case.
“The Chairperson of the first respondent has in affidavit made clear that the petitioner will in no way be prejudiced because the questions that the petitioner sought to have in interrogatories those will be subject matter in cross examination,” Mr Tsikata explained.
He further said the two respondents (Electoral Commission and Nana Akufo-Addo) should rather be eager to mount the witness box to clear its names in the ongoing petition.
Reopening application dismissed
The Supreme Court, in an unanimous decision tossed out the request to allow the petitioner John Dramani Mahama in the ongoing election petition re-open his case.
Among other things, the seven member panel presided over by the Chief Justice Anin Yeboah said the petitioner’s legal team have not demonstrated any new evidence, in its argument for re-opening.
The court also maintained that the plaintiff or petitioner (John Mahama) must not rely on the evidence from the respondents (Electoral Commission and Nana Akufo-Addo) as its strength.
Justice Anin Yeboah reiterated that the team have also not furnish the court with the new evidence, it wishes to bring to bear through the testimony of the EC Chairperson.
It was of the opinion that the petitioner had decided to close its case based on the evidence they had provided through their three witnesses.
Aside from the CJ, the other panel members are Yaw Apau, Samuel K. Marful Sau, Nene Amegathcher, Professor Ashie Kotey, Mariama Owusu and Gertrude Torkornoo.
The court has set Monday, February 22, 2021, to hear the review application and the closing arguments from all parties.
Two additional justices would be added to the panel, making nine.