Supreme Court rules against re-opening of case by John Mahama

The Supreme court has ruled that lawyers of John Mahama cannot open their case in the ongoing 2020 election petition hearing.

It follows arguments by the lawyers of the petitioner, first respondent and second respondent.

Chief Justice Anin Yeboah read the ruling in court on Tuesday, 16 February 2021.

He quoted several authorities to buttress the court’s position.

“A mere filing of a witness statement is not an election to testify”, Justice Anin Yeboah said, adding: “We accordingly refuse that application”.

Mr Mahama’s lead counsel, Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, had argued in court on Monday, 15 February that his side intended reopening the case so that it could subpoena the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Mrs Jean Mensa, as a “hostile” or “adverse” witness if leave had been granted by the court to his side’s prayer.

Mr Tsikata also insisted that for the sake of the God Mrs Mensa worships, it was important for her to mount the witness box.

In his counter-arguments against the reopening of the case, Mr Justin Amenuvor, lead counsel for the EC said allowing Mr Tsikata to cross-examine Mrs Mensa as a hostile witness would be an abuse of the legal process.

Also, Mr Akoto Ampaw, the lead counsel for President Nana Akufo-Addo, the second respondent in the case, argued that the party that bore the burden of proof, “as the petitioner does in this matter, must effectively meet that burden of proof”.

Meanwhile the court has adjourned sitting to Wednesday.

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