It is expected that the Petitioners in Ghana’s Presidential Election Petition will wrap up their cross-examination of the Chairman of the Electoral Commission today.
The substantive hearing of the petition which began on the 16th April 2013 is seeking to overturn the Electoral Commission’s declaration of John Mahama as winner 2012 Presidential Election in favour of NPP’s presidential candidate Nana Akuffo Addo, and his running mate Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia – both Petitioners.
The other petitioner is NPP national chairman Jake Obetsebi Lamptey.
Philip Addison, counsel for the Petitioners yesterday told the court that he is likely to end his cross-examination on Tuesday. He added this will largely depend on the cooperation of the witness and chair of the Electoral Commission, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan.
He has for the past few days been relying on irregularities categorized under the P-series which deals with their multiple registration.Proceedings begin
The court is set for another day and may be the final round of cross examination of witness for the second Respondent Dr Kwadwo Afari Gyan by the Petitioners seeking to over turn the 2012 election results.
The Bar is introducing their team of lawyers to the judges who are sitting high up the bench, listening and watching.
Afari Gyan walks into the dock. He is reminded again of his oath.
FLASH BACK Yesterday, Philip Addison cross examined Dr Afari Gyan on disparities in results captured on pink sheets and those declared by the EC. He cited the case in Ledzorkuku Constituency in Accra. He was stopped in his tracks by the Respondents who alleged that the Petitioners have abandoned this specific allegations and must not go back there again. Quarshie-Idun also said the question being asked about Ledzorkuku was not pleaded. The Respondents promised to provide the court with the details of the transcripts in which Dr Bawumia’s testified that they had abandoned
Today Tsatsu Tsikata is up. He makes reference to the 14 and 15 May cross examination of Dr Bawumia on questions regarding what happened at the Ledzorkuku Constituency.
He reads portions of the May 14 transcript of the court proceedings which had to do with allegations of vote padding and the questions he put to Bawumia who was then in the dock.
He reads Bawumia’s answers, part of which said that the Petitioners have abandoned those allegations and are not part of the case they have before the court. He said they were dealing with the primary record
Quarshie Idun is also up and makes reference to 25th April transcripts in which Dr Bawumia under cross examination said they were not relying on the allegations of vote deduction and padding.
Addison responds saying the constituencies named are stated in the affidavits of the Petitioners. He says Bawumia did not have the full compliment of the pink sheets during his cross examination that was why he said they are abandoning the case. He says it is a petition brought challenging the results and Serious questions are being raised on the collation of results. The witness is capable of answering the question and must be made to answer. It goes to the credibility of the witness especially as it relates to constituency results so declared by the EC. He says they have provided the witness and his lawyers with all the details
He reads Paragraph 20 and 24 of the second ammended petition in which the Petitioners mentioned allegations of vote deduction from accumulated votes of the first Petitioner and padding of votes to the first Respondent.
One of the judges asks if the Petitioners abandoned that allegation at some point.
Addison responds saying Dr Bawumia was limited at the time because he did not have the full pink sheets and that was why he said they were abandoning those specific allegations but it does not and should not stop the Petitioners from asking the EC’s witness who was actually the Returning Officer of the Presidential election to answer these simple simple questions.
He accuses Respondents of making to many interjections and objections and that is delaying his cross examination.
Judges take a moment to ponder on the banter and will shortly give their ruling on whether Afari Gyan can answer the Ledzorkuku controversy.
By a 7-2 majority decision the objection is overruled. Addison can ask his question on Ledzorkuku.
Addison says the figures he gave yesterday regarding the Ledzorkuku constituency were wrong and will now ask a new one.
Dr Basit Bamba says as a matter of fairness they are entitled to be heard on the application to withdraw the question.
Tsatsu Tsikata says the bench is being highly generous to Addison because it is the same question which he now seeks to withdraw that the court ruled on.
Addison hands over a document which is analysis on votes in nine constituencies, Ledzorkuku missing pink sheets, Techiman North missing pink sheets, Yilo Krobo missing pink sheets, Upper West Akim missing pink sheets Mpohor missing pink sheets, Yendi Pink sheets Ketu North and Ofori krom missing pink sheets.
He asks witness if he has crossed the pink sheets. Afari Gyan says he is only seeing them this morning and there is no opportunity to cross check.
Quarshie Idun says they received a mail on missing pink sheet only yesternight at 10:00 pm with no exhibit numbers on the document.
Addison reminds the Second Respondent that he has not even asked a question and there is an objection. Quarshie Idun concedes and says he will wait for the question. Addison proceeds.
Addison asks witness if he got a list polling stations no longer being relied on by the Petitioners. Afari Gyan says no.
Addison asks if witness has checked the list of 833 pink sheets which were brought to his attention yesterday. Afari Gyan says he has not yet concluded. He hopes to complete it later today and can answer questions on it after lunch time.
Addison says his cross examination has been stalled because of the inability of the witness to answer questions on the documents before him.
Quarshie Idun says the witness can only answer questions on the list of nine constituencies tomorrow because there are no pink sheet accompanying it and they must cross-check their facts.
On the 833 pink sheets, the witness will be ready in the afternoon.
The court goes on recess.
Addison hands witness a document to identify and to tell the court if the exhibits in his possession are part of the president’s set found in the KPMG report and whether they are unique polling station.
Afari Gyan mentions the names of five exhibits and says apart from those ones all the others in the list are part of the President’s set.
Addison asks witness if he has received a list of duplicate serial numbers the Petitioners are no longer relying on.
Quarshie Idun raises an objection. He wonders why the Petitioners seek to tender the list of exhibits they are no longer relying on, through his witness. He says Petitioners can makes reference to those lists during their address to the court.
One of the judges intervenes and says the Petitioners have not said they will be tendering that document, and even if they were, it will not harm the case of the Respondent in any way.
Another judge says the intervention by Quarshie-Idun is premature. He says he will wait till it is matured.
Addison asks witness to confirm if the five polling stations he mentioned is part of the list deleted. Afari Gyan confirms.
Addison tenders the document through the witness. No objection from the Respondents.
Analysis of 9 constituencies
Addison presents to witness a document which is the analysis of nine constituencies and another list with allegations of missing pink sheets.
Afari Gyan says he does not understand what missing pink sheets meant.
Quarshie Idun is up. He says a member of the Petitioners legal team Akoto Ampau had told him during lunch break that missing pink sheets meant they do not have it. They are now bringing evidence through the back door.
Addison says the objection is premature. They are not seeking to tender the document and they have not asked for pink sheets. He says the question is related to voters register.
Addison suggests to witness that the results declared by the EC as the total valid votes cast in Ledzorkuku exceeded the votes recorded in the pink sheets by 8,069. Quarshie Idun raises an objection. Afari Gyan says it is wrong.
Addison: Can you tell the total valid votes cast in Techiman North. Afari Gyan says he has to first cross check from the pink sheet. Addison wants to have a look at the
Afari Gyan mentions the figure for Techiman North as 30,616. Addison says it is the same figure in the analysis. Afari Gyan confirms.
Addison suggests that the figure mentioned exceeds the total valid votes on the pink sheets by over 1,000.
Addison asks him to confirm the total valid votes for Yilo Krobo. Afari Gyan mentions 42076. He confirms that is the same figure in the analysis.
Addison there is an excess in the tally of pink sheets by over a 1000 votes.
Berekum West, Afari Gyan mentions 18,117. Addison says the figure exceeds the total tally on the pink sheets by almost 4,000 votes.
Upper West Akim; Afari Gyan mentions 33,632 and confirms it is the same figure in the analysis. Addison says the figure exceeds the total tally of pink sheets by over 1,300 votes
Yendi. Afari Gyan mentions the total valid votes as 48,741. Addison says
the figure exceeds the total tally of pink sheets by over a 1,000 votes.
Addison asks him to confirm the total valid votes cast in Oforikrom constituency. 90,760 Afari Gyan mentions. He confirms the same figure is in the analysis. Addison says the figure exceeds the total tally of pink sheets by over 1600 votes. Afari Gyan rejects that assertion.
Addison asks him to confirm the total valid votes cast in Ledzorkuku constituency. He mentions 94,931 and confirms it is the same figure in the analysis. Addison says the figure exceeds the total tally of pink sheets in the constituency by over 8,000 votes. That is not correct Afari Gyan answers.
Addison asks for the figure for Ketu North 43644. Exceeds the tally on pink sheets by 679 votes. That is not correct, Afari Gyan answers
Mpohor. Afari Gyan mentions 17,406. He confirms the same figure is in the analysis. The figure exceeds the tally of pink sheets by 14. That is not correct Afari Gyan answers.
Addison directs him to look at figures in column B representing the total registered voters on the constituencies listed in column B. Afari Gyan says he does not understand it because there is no correlation at all with the question being asked and columns being referred to.
Quarshie Idun is up with an objection. He says witness did not prepare the document and cannot be asked questions on them. Basit Bamba and Tsatsu Tsikata join the chorus of objections. Tsikata says it appears a brand new case seems to be emerging from the questions being posed.
Objections have been upheld
Addison says out of the total of 10,081 polling stations the total over-votes amounted to 742,492. Afari Gyan says he cannot tell because he does not know the constituencies being referred to.
Addison says out of the 742,492 over votes, 502013 inured to the benefit of the first Respondent and the first Petitioner had 225,115. Afari Gyan says he cannot confirm.
For the total votes affected by no biometric verification the figure is 810,827. Afari Gyan says every body who voted were verified.
Addison says out of those votes, 558236 belong to the first Respondent and 234161 went to the first Petitioner. Afari Gyan says he cannot answer that.
Addison says the total votes affected by no signature 659135 out of which 447655 went to the first Respondent. 197,628 attributable ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE FIRST pETITIONER. Afari Gyan says he has no basis of knowing that.
Votes attributable to duplicate serial numbers is 3,499,308. Of this the votes for the first Respondent is 2,338,993 and to the first Petitioner it is 1,093661. Afari Gyan says he does not know that for a ct
Addison says the the total votes for all the irregularities are 3,919,385 votes out of which 2612788 went to the first Respondent and 1228229 are votes attributed to the first Petitioner. Afari Gyan says he has no basis of knowing that.
The major beneficiary of this violation is the first Respondent. Afari Gyan says that is not correct.
Addison asks if he has figures to the contrary. Afari Gyan says the figures he announced are the correct ones. He says he has no basis to change the figures of the results he announced.
Addison asks witness to confirm if the First Petitioner was his room mate. He confirms. He again asks him if he was a registered voter at the Dubois centre. Afari Gyan affirms.
Addison hands him a document and asks him to identify. Afari Gyan mentions the document as Electoral Commission Political parties voters register 2012.
Is your picture on that list, Addison asks. He confirms.
Addison asks if he recalls when this registration was done. Afari Gyan says he cannot say but he is sure it was done in the registration period before the elections.
Which month? Addison asks. Afari Gyan says he cannot remember.
Do you remember
Afari Gyan says at the time witness registered he was 66. Yes Afari Gyan
Are you aware you are younger by two years to your room mate and first Petitioner, Addison asks. Fine, Afari Gyan says. He adds that he is 68.
Do you recall addressing the Editors Forum on December 5 2012. Yes Afari Gyan says.
Addison asks him if he recalls what he said in that address. Afari Gyan says he does not remember.
Addison offers to play to him a recording of the address. Afari Gyan says the recording must be played in full.
Addison says he should wait when it comes to the re-examination they can play it in full.
Addison plays the recording.
Afari Gyan’s address: No verification no voting and by verification we mean everybody will have to be verified bio-metrically except those who fall into the category who have no hands or those who could not be captured by the fingerprints. Let me also say that people who lose their Ids can go and vote but please use the same name. Where votes in the ballot box outnumber the people verified to vote, we will cancel the entire votes and rerun the elections if the results of that polling station can over turn the results of the election.
Addison asks if that was his voice. He confirms.
He asks witness to confirm saying if there is an over vote the results will be cancelled and there will be a rerun. Afari Gyan says no. what I said was it will be cancelled and a rerun ordered IF it will make a difference.
Addison is done with the witness. Quarshie Idun hints there will be no re-examination but reminds the court of the information his witness promised to give on issues to do with duplication and triplication of the serial numbers.
Addison says it will be grossly unfair for the witness to be allowed to prosecute the case behind their backs. That is fresh evidence in re-examination he says.
Quarshie Idun pleads with the court to ask witness one more question.
He asks Afari Gyan to explain the the reason for the duplications of serial numbers. Afari Gyan says he was presented with five set and the first three set of pink sheets were triplicates and the last two sets quadruplicates. He mentions the serial number of one of them.
Addison raises an objection. He says witness cannot hold a piece of paper and mention serial numbers when he had already confirmed the duplicates and triplicates on pink sheets.
Afari Gyan says he has with him the pink sheets but only made a list to corroborate the findings and he wishes to tender the list.
Addison raises an objection. He says no proper foundation has been laid. The second Respondent has not found it necessary to file any pink sheets at all and at the tail end of the proceedings they provide a bundle of pink sheets.
Quarshie Idun says it is an attempt to suppress the truth. Addison disagrees. He says the witness was provided with the pink sheet and could have cross checked with his pink sheets in his possession. But he confirmed the serial numbers and accepted there were triplicates so for him to come back later with this pile is unacceptable.
Presiding judge Atuguba assures Addison that the Petitioners will be given the opportunity to cross examine the witness again on this new findings he purports to be making.
Addison says he needs time to look through the new pile of pink sheets, 17 in all before the second Respondent can proceed.
Court grants him that time to look though and goes for a short recess.
Addison says after checking they found out that in respect of Chief Bello polling station the serial numbers are the same. He says he understands why the EC was reluctant in exhibiting their own pink sheets because there are serious errors in there. He prays the court will give them the opportunity to cross examine witness on them.
Afari Gyan tenders the list together with his pink sheets.
Addison rises to cross examine witness.
It is expected that the Petitioners in Ghana’s Presidential Election Petition will wrap up their cross-examination of the Chairman of the Electoral Commission today.