E opposes Petitioner’s leave to re-open case today

The Electoral Commission (EC), has opposed the Petitioner’s motion for leave to re-open his case in the ongoing Election 2020 Petition Trial.

In an affidavit sworn by its Chairperson, Mrs Jean A Mensa, the Commission noted that the application was not warranted by any rule of law or procedure and prayed the Court to dismiss it.

According to the EC Boss, “at no time have I informed the Petitioner or his lawyers of my desire to testify in the matter.”

On the contrary, “I have not intimated to this honourable Court that I would testify in the case. ”

The EC Chairperson said the Petitioner had not showed sufficient reason for the Court to permit the reopening of the case.

The EC Boss, who is the first respondent in the trial, prayed the Supreme Court should not permit proceedings to drag on unduly on the basis of a party’s after thought and inability to prove its case in court.

She said, the Petitioner’s application for interogatories was dismissed by the Apex Court of the land not on the basis of “alleged representation” but on the grounds that “the Petitioner had failed to make out a case.”

The EC Boss said the Petitioner had not stated what “I represented neither did he state what prejudicial reliance was placed on the alleged representation.”

On Dr Michael Kpessa-Whyte and Mr Robert Joseph Mettle-Nunoo’s testimonies, which formed the basis of the application, the EC Boss contended that, the two testified mostly about their departure from the EC ‘s ‘strong room.’

She held that the Commission would not waste time and effort over the “tottering” case, hence its decision not to testify “because there is nothing to testify about.”

On the issue of public interest, the EC Boss said there were more convenient fora of ventilating “so called public interest,” adding that same should not form the basis of the Petitioner’s petition.

The EC Chairperson said the Petitioner’s quest to invoke the powers of the Court to summon it (EC) was, therefore, an ” abuse of the Court”

“I believe that this Court has the power to call a witness suo Motu but not a party, let alone a party adjudged to move a vested right to decide not to testify.”

The EC Boss opined that subpoenas were issued to a person not a party, to testify for the party on whose behalf it was issued.

She said the decision of the Court had rendered the proposed subpoena “irrelevant.”

The Petitioner has filed a motion for leave to re-open his case and subpoena the EC to testify.

The Petitioner is also demanding that the second respondent, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s witness also mount the witness box to be cross-examined after he had closed his case.

The Supreme Court, however, in unanimous decision on Thursday, February 11, 2021, declared that it could not compel the first and second respondents to testify.

Source: Modern Ghana

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