The Supreme Court will on Thursday determine whether or not the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Mrs Jean Adukwei Mensa, must mount the witness box to be cross-examined in the 2020 presidential election petition.
The court will make that determination following over three hours of legal arguments by counsel for the petitioner and the first and second respondents on their respective cases on the issue Tuesday morning.
Counsel for the EC, Mr Justin Amenuvor, argued that the rules of court specifically Order 38 (4)(4) of the High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, C.I. 47 allowed the EC, which is the first respondent in the petition, not to adduce evidence.
He argued that the decision not to testify is at the behest of parties, and that the court has no business on whether or not a party will call witnesses to adduce evidence.
According to him, if the petitioner, former President John Dramani Mahama, has a good case, he should be excited that the respondents have decided not to give evidence.
Counsel of Nana Akufo-Addo (2nd respondent), Mr Akoto Ampaw, associated himself with the submissions of counsel for the EC.
He argued that the petitioner should be happy at the decision by the respondents not to call witnesses.
Counsel for former President Mahama, Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, argued that it was in the interest of justice for the EC Chairperson to be cross-examined.
According to him, Mrs Mensa was the person responsible for the declaration of presidential results and that she had a responsibility to account to the people of Ghana.
Also, it was his submission that Mrs Mensa must be in the witness box because she had filed a witness statement and also made certain assertions in her affidavits which presupposes that she was “offering herself to be cross-examined.”
He further argued that counsel for the EC opposed the petitioner’s application for interrogatories with the explanation that those interrogatories could be asked during cross-examination.
In view of that, he argued the EC chairperson had willingly agreed and elected to be cross-examined.