February 5, 2013 (Lead Story)
National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Electoral Commission (EC)
have opposed moves by three leaders of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to
amend their petition challenging the results of the December 2012
According to the two bodies, the proposal by the petitioners to
amend the petition was against the rules of the court and had the
potential to protract the case.
While the NDC maintains that the
procedure being adopted by the petitioners was contrary to the rules of
the court, the EC for its part argued that “the proposed amended
petition, which the petitioners are seeking leave to file, suffers from
the same deficiencies, shortcomings and defects, which caused the second
respondent to file an application, which is currently pending before
this honourable court, and is awaiting its ruling”.
respondent, the EC, had already filed an application for “further and
better particulars”, praying the Supreme Court to order the petitioners
to supply the names and codes of the 4,709 polling stations where
alleged electoral irregularities took place.
A ruling is expected
to be delivered on the EC’s application for further and better
particulars at the court’s sitting in Accra today, Tuesdaday.
presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo
Dankwa Akufo-Addo; his running mate, Dr Mahamadu Bawumia; and the
Chairman of the NPP, Mr Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, filed a petition on
December 28, 2012 citing irregularities at 4,709 polling stations during
the conduct of the presidential election on December 7, 2013.
They are praying the court to annul the results at those polling stations, but the EC has denied the claims.
the petitioners amended the petition dated January 31, 2013, praying
the Supreme Court to annul 4,670,504 valid votes cast during the
election at 11,916 polling stations where alleged irregularities were
The petitioners are also seeking to introduce the claim
that there were 28 locations where elections took place which, according
to them, were not part of the 26,002 polling stations created by the
However, in the latest rounds of oppositions all dated
February 4, 2013, the NDC, which is the third respondent, and the EC are
praying the court to dismiss the motion to amend the petition on
grounds that it was without merit and must, therefore, be refused by the
A notice of preliminary objection to the application to
amend the petition filed on behalf of the NDC by its solicitors, Law
Trust Company, at 2:40 pm, yesterday, said the application to amend the
petition that was served on the NDC on January 31, 2013 “only for a
notice of withdrawal without leave of the court, was improper.”
submitted further that “petitioners cannot determine their own
procedure for filing any process and the filing of another application
to amend when leave of the court has not been obtained to do so, is not
allowed by the rules of this honourable court”.
The party, which
was allowed to join the petition on January 22, 2013, stated that
“having filed a Notice of Withdrawal unconditionally without having
obtained an order of this honourable court granting them liberty to
reapply, petitioners are estopped from repeating the same application”.
is, therefore, praying the Supreme Court to strike out the application
to amend the petition and, award cost against the petitioners.
affidavit in opposition deposed to on behalf of the EC by its Deputy
Chairman in charge of Finance and Administration, Mr Amadu Sulley, at
2.15 p.m, Monday, held that the proposed amendment would prolong the
case and, for that reason, must not be allowed by the court.
related development, the petitioners have filed an application in
opposition to the President’s motion seeking permission from the court
to serve a number of interrogatories on them (petitioners.)
affidavit in opposition deposed to on behalf of the petitioners by a
Vice-Chairman of the NPP, Mr Fred Oware, and dated February 3, 2013,
held that the matters in respect of which the President sought
clarification were clearly and sufficiently set out in the amended
The President is seeking to elicit from the petitioners a
clarification of the method by which they arrived at the aggregate
number of 1,342,845, which the petitioners were seeking the court to
annul on the basis of alleged irregularities and/or malpractice.
However, the petitioners are arguing that those issues needed no further clarification.
to the affidavit in opposition, President Mahama’s interrogatories were
not brought in good faith and amounted to a time-wasting device which
“will not promote a fair, open, cost-effective and efficient trial”.
The petitioners are, consequently, praying the court to dismiss the application to serve the interrogatories on the petitioners.
what promises to be a landmark case in Ghana’s legal history, the EC
has also filed an affidavit in opposition to the petitioners’ prayer to
the court, to order the EC to produce documents for inspection and
subsequently allow them (petitioners) to make copies of.
to the EC, Dr Bawumia had, on January 25, 2013, stated in an affidavit
sworn on behalf of the other two petitioners that they (petitioners) had
copies of the documents “for which they are seeking discovery”.
discovery requested in the instant application is not necessary, is
oppressive, an abuse of the process of the court, and that it is not
made in good faith,” the EC argued, and accordingly prayed the court to
A nine-member panel, presided over by Mr Justice
William Atuguba, with Mr Justice Julius Ansah, Mrs Justice Sophia
Adinyira, Ms Justice Rose Owusu, Mr Justice Jones Dotse, Mr Justice
Annin Yeboah, Mr Justice P. Baffoe-Bonnie, Mr Justice N. S. Gbadegbe and
Mrs Justice Vida Akoto-Bamfo will make a decision on the applications
from the EC, the petitioners and the President.
matter would be heard after the court clears all the preliminary legal
issues being raised by parties in the case.