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Akufo-Addo responds to Mahama’s election petition

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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says that the Declaration of President-Elect Instrument is the proper method “at law” for declaring a winner of a Presidential Election and not the initial announcement by the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission which has no basis in law.

This was contained in his Response dated 8 January 2021 to John Dramani Mahama’s Election Petition.

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the second Respondent in the 2020 Presidential Election says therefore that the Supreme Court should dismiss the petition brought before it by Mahama because it was not based on Article 64(1) of the Constitution which makes “the validity” of an election the basis of a Presidential Election Petition.

John Dramani Mahama meanwhile argues that the Declaration of President-Elect Instrument was based on the public Declaration by Jean Mensa on 9 December 2020.

Akufo-Addo acknowledges that but says those errors notwithstanding, the validity of the election itself has not been challenged by the Petitioner.

He intends to use the 2013 Supreme Court Presidential Election involving himself and John Dramani Mahama as his reference points.

In a 12-page response by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, with his own law firm advising him, the President argues that the petition does not disclose any attack on the validity of the elections held in the 38,622 polling stations and 311 special voting centres, and therefore, the petition is borne out of unfounded imagination.

Akufo-Addo added that the allegation by the Petitioner of “vote padding” which involves some 6622 votes is empty and does not materially affect the outcome of the 2020 general election.

Akufo-Addo’s response partly reads: “2nd Respondent says that the election was conducted across 38,622 polling stations in Ghana and 311 special voting centres and that in each polling station and special voting centre, the votes were counted and the results declared in the presence of representatives of the candidates, counting agents, voters, the general public and in most instances, the media and local and international observers.”

It continued: “Upon the declaration of results, copies are posted at the various polling stations in accordance with the law governing the elections.

“2nd Respondent states that the Petition does not disclose any attack on the validity of the election held throughout the 38,622 polling stations and 311 special voting centres or any of the processes set out in paragraphs 3 and 4 (supra).”

Akufo-Addo further indicated that Mahama’s petition failed to disclose how many votes he should have obtained except pointing out that none of the candidates got more than 50% of the total valid votes cast.

“2nd Respondent, in the circumstance, says the petition is merely conjectural and borne out of petitioner’s unfounded imagination and further that the material facts in the petition do not support the reliefs sought and, therefore, same should be dismissed in limine as incompetent.”

Akufo-Addo further indicated that Mahama in his petition stated that if all votes from Techiman South Constituency are added to his votes, the NPP’s Akufo-Addo will get less than 50% of the total valid votes cast noting that the results from Techiman South were known to John Dramani Mahama at the time of filing his petition.

If the total valid votes cast are credited to each candidate correctly, Akufo-Addo avers that he will duly obtain more than 50% of the votes cast.

Akufo-Addo, therefore, prayed the Supreme Court to “determine that the petition is incompetent, frivolous and vexatious, and discloses no reasonable cause of action in terms of article 64(1) of the Constitution and set the issue down for legal arguments.”

Article 64(1) reads: “The validity of the election of the President may be challenged only by a citizen of Ghana who may present a petition for the purpose to the Supreme Court within twenty-one days after the declaration of the result of the election in respect of which the petition is presented.”

John Dramani Mahama has filed a petition at the Apex Court challenging the 9 December 2020 Declaration by Jean Mensa, that Nana Akufo-Addo is the winner of the 2020 Presidential election and is praying that the court should annul that Declaration.

Mahama avers that if that Declaration which was based on wrong results and a wrong calculation of the then outstanding Techiman South Results were considered, then there was no winner, thereby necessitating a rerun.

Akufo-Addo had indicated that the evidence of vote padding produced by the Petition amounts to just 6622 votes, which are insignificant since he was validly elected based on Article 64(1) by a margin of 500 thousand votes.

He stated that more than 38 thousand polling station results witnessed by the general public and international observers attest to his win.

He, however, entered into quicksand in paragraph 35 when he stated that the results were “corroborated by all media houses of note in the country as well as many local and international observers”.

The EU Observer Mission has, however, stated that the collation of results was “less transparent”.

John Mahama, the immediate past head of state, has filed an amendment to his petition which is correct the error of referring to Akufo-Addo as 1st Respondent instead of the second Respondent – an error Akufo-Addo repeated throughout his response – all is set for the legal arguments beginning 14 January.

Judgement should be delivered by 10 February according to the rules governing the case.

 

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NPP’s Mac Manu, Jean Mensa testify against Mahama in election petition

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The NPP’s Peter Mac Manu and EC Chairperson Jean Mensa have testified against 2020 NDC Presidential Candidate, John Dramani Mahama’s election petition.

Mr. Mahama is seeking to annul the results of the election won by the NPP’s Nana Akufo-Addo and have a re-run of the polls.

On January 20, the Supreme Court announced January 26 as the date to commence hearing of the substantive aspect of the petition.

It also urged the parties in the case to file their respective witness statements.

EC’s witness statement

The EC statement covers 6 pages and is signed by Jean Mensa. She commences her testimony by stating that the information she’s putting across is from her own knowledge of events leading to the filing of the petition and other matters that have come after.

She states that the results of the 2020 elections held on December 7 were collated in accordance with Public Elections Regulations, 2020 (C.I 127).

She points out that Nana Akufo-Addo obtained 6,730,413 of the valid votes cast while John Mahama got 6,214,889.

She adds that the total valid votes stood at 13,121,111.

These figures she asserts shows that Mr. Akufo-Addo got more than 50% of the valid votes.

She additionally argues that whatever votes remained outstanding at the time of declaration could not mathematically change the more than 50% of valid votes obtained by Mr. Akufo-Addo.

She admits in her testimony that she inadvertently announced 13,434,574 as the total valid votes instead of stating this figure as total number of votes cast.

She insists that a simple tabulation of all votes obtained by each candidate as declared comes to 13,121,111. The form declaring the results, Mrs. Mensa says was signed by 8 agents of the candidates who were present at the time of the completion of the form.

Her inadvertence, she insists did not affect the constrictions threshold of 50% plus 1. The error she explains was immediately corrected the next day by the EC through a statement.

On the Techiman South constituency results which were outstanding at the time of declaration, Mrs. Mensa says it’s inclusion or exclusion from the votes obtained by the candidates does not change the outcome of the results.

She concludes her testimony by denying claims the Commission padded votes in favour of Nana Akufo-Addo.

Peter Mac Manu’s testimony

The NPP’s Peter Mac Manu commences his testimony by stating that Nana Akufo-Addo has appointed him to testify on his behalf.

He sets off the testimony by saying the petition is without merit and based on unfounded and misconceived assumptions.

He explains that the petition does not disclose any attack on the validity of the election held throughout the 38,622 polling stations and 311 special voting centers.

He describes the allegations of wrong aggregation of votes and vote padding as “empty and collectively involve about 6,622 votes- this is a sum patently insignificant to materially affect the outcome of an election which 2nd respondent defeated Petitioner by well over 500,000 votes.

He also states that Mr. Mahama does not disclose in the petition the number of valid votes he believes he actually obtained and what Mr. Mahama believes Nana Akufo-Addo got to merit a run off.

“The Petition is largely conjectural and borne out of petitioner’s unfounded imagination”, Mr. Manu adds.

The entire petition he argues is premised on the insignificant accuracies and slips made by the EC Chairperson in her declaration.

He insists further that the petition is a ruse and face-saving gimmick deployed by Mr. Mahama after the official results declared by the EC and election observers showed he had lost the polls despite claiming victory earlier.

He ends by pointing out that he has attached to his statement videos of NDC leaders who had claimed John Mahama won the election by more than 51% of votes casts.

He adds that the petition however states that no candidate obtained more than 50% of the votes including the candidate said to have won by more than 51%, that is John Mahama.

 

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Official: Osafo-Marfo, Gloria Akuffo dropped; Ursula, Oppong-Nkrumah retained

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President Akufo-Addo has released a total of 46 Ministers for his second term, a cut from the 126 that served in his first term.

The President in a statement Thursday said the list of Ministers will be submitted to Parliament today.

The statement noted the President has scrapped the Office of the Senior Minister.

It further noted eight out of the 46 Ministers will be women.

“In all, President Akufo-Addo will appoint a total of thirty (30) Ministers, and sixteen (16) Regional Ministers, bringing the total number of Ministers to forty-six (46). Eight (8) of this number are women – six (6) Ministers and two (2) Regional Ministers. This is the list that will be submitted to Parliament by the President on Thursday.”

 

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OFFICIAL: Prez Akufo-Addo Announces First List Of Appointees

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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has made the following appointments to his office for his second term.

The appointees are to undertake their duties in acting capacities, subject to consultation with the yet-to-be constituted Council of State.

In a statement signed by Eugene Arhin, Madam Akosua Frema Osei-Opare remains the Chief of Staff, Nana Asante Bediatuo, Secretary to the President and Mercy Debrah-Karikari, Secretary to the Cabinet.

Mr. Emmanuel Adumua-Bossman and Fawaz Aliu have also been appointed as Deputy Chiefs of Staff to replace Samuel Abu Jinapor and Francis Asenso-Aboagye, now Members of Parliament.

The rest are as follows:

Brig. Gen. Emmanuel Okyere – National Security Advisor

Saratu Atta – P.A to the President,

Lord Commey – Director of Operations

Eugene Kofi Bentum Arhin – Director of Communication

Sam Ellis – Director of Personnel

Dr Isaac Owusu-Mensah – Director of Research

Kow Essuman – Legal Counsel to the President

Micheal Ofori-Atta – Director for ECOWAS and Regional Integration

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