Agyekum: 2020 election petition has boosted Ghana’s democratic credentials

Frank Agyekum, a former minister of information under the Kufour led administration has described the  2020 election petition as a further boost to Ghana’s democratic credentials globally.

He believes despite the inability of the petitioner to bring substantive evidence to support his argument that none of the presidential candidate crossed the 50%+ mark, other countries may learn from the case.

He wrote on facebook “The petitioner’s inability to provide any alternate figures to challenge the declared results before or during the trial had put a dampener on the minds of many on the superiority of their claims.”

Agyekum added “What this case has done, however, is to once again cement Ghana’s democratic credentials as a leader in Africa and the developing world. Indeed, others even in the more developed world could take a leaf from our example.”

Below is the full post

Right from the beginning, it was an anti-climax. The 2020 Election Petition, never seized the imagination of the nation, as did that of 2013.

Then, the whole nation waited in heightened anticipation. The petitioners had raised enough doubts in the imagination of the people pointing to irregularities in the elections and figures that purported to challenge the authenticity of the declared results.

In court, the ante was raised a notch higher with the copious exhibition of ‘pink sheets’ seeking to invalidate the declared results.

Not so this time around. The Petitioner’s case rather sought, among others, to challenge the constitutionality of the results as declared by the EC chair, and to seek a re-run of the elections between the two leading contestants, President Akufo-Addo and former President John Mahama, because, in their contention, none of them crossed the 50%+ mark required to be declared the winner.

No figures were provided to back this point. In court, the lead witness of the petitioner, Asiedu Nketiah, during cross-examination could not advance the argument to debunk the EC declared results in favour of President Akufo-Addo.

In the end, the decision of the court in support of the respondents did not surprise many.

The petitioner’s inability to provide any alternate figures to challenge the declared results before or during the trial had put a dampener on the minds of many on the superiority of their claims.

What this case has done, however, is to once again cement Ghana’s democratic credentials as a leader in Africa and the developing world. Indeed, others even in the more developed world could take a leaf from our example.

Courts ruling

The Supreme Court on , by a unanimous decision, has affirmed the victory of President Akufo-Addo in the 2020 presidential election.

“The petitioner has not produced any evidence to rebut the presumptions created by the publication of CI 135 for which his action has failed. We have, therefore, no reason to order for a rerun … we accordingly dismiss the petition as having no merit,” Chief Justice Anin-Yeboah ruled.

With this unanimous, seven-member decision, the Supreme Court dismissed the petition.

The court determined that the petitioner had based his case on an error made by the chair of the Electoral Commission during the declaration of the election result on 9 December 2020, but that the error could not void the will of the people in electing a president.

The Supreme Court also held that the error made by the EC in using total votes cast as the basis for reckoning the total valid votes during the declaration was corrected, and that the correction was made in accordance with the law.

The petitioner, John Mahama, had claimed that none of the candidates who stood in the presidential election had obtained more than 50% of the votes cast.

Mahama alleged that the second respondent, President Akufo-Addo, won the election through vote padding.

He also claimed the candidate had benefited from arithmetical and computational errors. He concluded that the EC’s declaration of President Akufo-Addo was unconstitutional, given that he did not obtain more than 50% of the votes cast.

Fred Dzakpata

Gh Extractives

Ghextractives.com is an independent multimedia portal that seeks to provide credible information and news content to readers especially players in the extractive sector in Ghana, Africa and beyond. It also provides a unique platform for players in the energy sector to market their products and reach a wider audience

View All Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.