As Nine Wise Men Affirms John Mahama’s Victory, Afari-Djan And President Obasanjo Vindicated
After eight months of virtual ambitious presidential kidnap and ransom demand, Ghanaians yesterday breathed a sigh of liberation when the Supreme Court, unanimously dismissed the election petition filed by Nana Akufo-Addo, his running mate, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia and Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, all of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), with the country expected to return to normalcy.
Yesterday, the whole nation was in a mood of sobriety. Accra was as dead as cemetery, food vendors did not cook, truck pushers, hawkers, market women and even some banks, especially those in the central business district of Accra, refused to do business for fear of political upheaval, after a long-widening Supreme Court verdict.
But in 2 minutes 28 seconds, a much bastardized Justice William Atuguba, who presided over the nine-member Supreme Court Justices, sternly read out; “Well, this is the decision we have arrived at: Upon a scrutiny of the petition, we found that the issues to be determined are as set out at page 125 of the counsel for the petitioners’ written address were as follows:
1. Over voting, 2. Voting without biometric verification, 3. Absence of the signature of the presiding officer, 4. Duplicate serial numbers, that is to say occurrence of the same serial numbers on pink sheets for two different polling stations, 5. Duplicate polling station codes, that is to say occurrence of different results of pink sheets for polling stations with the same polling station codes 6. Unknown polling stations, that is to say results recorded for polling stations that are not part of 26,002 polling stations provided by the second respondent in the petition.
We unanimously dismiss the claims relating to duplicate serial numbers, duplicate polling station codes, and unknown polling stations that is for short.
Atuguba, Adinyira, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, and Akoto-Bamfo, dismiss the claim of over voting.
Atuguba, Adinyira, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, Akoto-Bamfo, dismiss the claims relating to absence of signature of presiding officer.
Atuguba, Adinyira, Dotsey, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, Akoto-Bamfo dismiss the claim relating to voting without biometric verification.
Ansah, Owusu and Anim Yeboah grant all the three claims, that is to say, over voting, absence of presiding officers’ signature and voting without biometric verification, annul the votes involved and order a rerun of the affected areas.
Dotsey JSC grants the claim of over-voting, but has provided a road-map in his judgement as in the figures of votes to be ascertained and cancelled and a re-run of the areas affected.
Dotsey JSC upholds the claim relating to absence of presiding officers’ signatures on the pink sheets, cancels the results concerned and orders a rerun of the areas affected.
Baffoe-Bonnie JSC grants the claim of voting without biometric verification, cancels the votes involved and orders a rerun of the areas affected.
In the circumstances, the overall effect is that the first respondent was validly elected and the petition is therefore dismissed.
Our various judgements for the sake of convenience are handed over to the registrar of this court.
We highly commend the services of KPMG, the referee appointed to undertake the count of the pink sheet and also the counsels on all sides of this case.
That is our judgement”.
The verdict means that Mr. John Dramani Mahama of National Democratic Congress (NDC), can see through his full four-year term as President of Republic of Ghana, to continue his dreams of delivering a “Better Ghana Agenda”.
Investors within and outside Ghana, were holding back their investments, blaming the Election Petition to the Supreme Court as something which was going to burn down Ghana and wipe out their investments. Those already in the country, started hoarding foreign currencies and flying out of town for fear of their dear lives.
Indeed, the action of Nana Akufo-Addo, his running mate Dr. Bawumia and Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey as well as his party brought the economy and all other national life on its knees with the cries; No money! No money!!
After a peaceful voting process on December 7, 2012 and okayed by Economic Communities of West African States (ECOWAS) observers, led by Oselugu Obasanjo, ex-President of Nigeria, the NPP went to the Supreme Court seeking some annulment of votes to make Nana Addo, the winner of the election.
The NPP immediately after the declaration converged at the Nima residence of Akufo Addo where they sang war songs, agitated, attacked and beaten up journalists whiles supporters of the NDC who had any paraphernalia of the party were also attacked resulting in deaths.
On Monday December 10 2012, supporters of the party converged at the Obra Spot at Kwame Nkrumah Circle, where they visited mayhem on innocent citizens and journalists, these rampaging supporters attacked anyone who came their way, leaving everybody in a state of fear and panic.
Members of Parliament (MP) on the ticket of the NPP, encouraged by Nana Addo’s decision to challenge the declaration by the EC, boycotted the January 7 inauguration of President Mahama. They later stayed away from the Appointments Committee of Parliament, to vet appointees of the President.
During the hearing of the election petition, agents of the NPP in particular the fanatics of Akufo-Addo denigrated the judges and raised hell and curses on them creating a state of fear and insecurity among well- meaning Ghanaians.
First it was Sammy Awuku, a Deputy Director of Communication, who in his interactions on radio bolstered the hopes of NPP supporters that President Mahama would be handing over in April.
He later attacked the President of the panel by describing his actions as selective and hypocritical on an Accra-based radio station which earned him a call for criminal contempt, where he was shown his ‘real size’ before the nine judges.
Then came Stephen Atubigah, a member of the NDC communication team and Ken Kuranchie, the Managing Editor of the pro-NPP Daily Searchlight newspaper, who were both jailed three days and ten days respectively, for Criminal Contempt.
On the last day of the hearing, came the contemptuous comments from Kwadwo Owusu-Afriyie alias Sir John, who is the NPP General Secretary and Hopeson Adorye, an NPP communication team member, who were together convicted to fines of Gh¢7,000, thanks to the begging prowess of their lawyer, Nii Ayikoi-Otoo for the judges to temper mercy with justice.
But finally on judgment day, the Supreme Court confirmed President Mahama as the “validly elected” president of Ghana and winner of the 2012 presidential election, paving the way for the country to move on.
The nine justices who sat on the case include; Justices William Atuguba, Julius Ansah, Sophia Adinyira, Rose Constance Owusu, Jones Victor Dotse, Anin Yeboah, Paul Baffoe-Bonnie, N. S. Gbadegbe and Vida Akoto-Bamfo.