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Mahama’s election petition is “incompetent, frivolous, vexatious”, says Akufo-Addo

President Akufo-Addo says Mahama's election petition does not measure up to the legal criteria for an action by the Supreme Court

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has responded to the 2020 election petition of John Mahama, describing it as “incompetent, frivolous and vexatious”.

In a 12-page response to the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Akufo-Addo said the petition challenging his eligibility as winner of Election 2020 “does not measure up to the legal criteria for an action” invoking the Supreme Court’s jurisdiction.

“The election petition filed by John Dramani Mahama is incompetent, devoid of substance and does not measure up to the legal criteria for an action invoking this Honourable Court’s jurisdiction under Article 64(1) of the Constitution,” the response stated.

Mahama is praying the Supreme Court to order a rerun of the election by declaring the results “null and void” and also restrain Akufo-Addo from holding himself up as president.

‘Empty allegations’

Advancing his point, Akufo-Addo noted that Mahama’s petition only raises “empty allegations of wrong aggregation of votes and votes padding”, adding that those allegations are unfounded and must be dismissed.

It added: “The election petition does not disclose any attack on the validity of the election held throughout the 38,622 polling stations and 311 special voting centres or any of the processes set out in the paragraphs 3 and 4 (supra)

“In point of fact, Petitioner only devotes an overwhelming portion of the petition (30 out of 35 paragraphs) to weak and inconsistent complaints about the “declaration of the winner” of the election by 1st Respondent, and the remaining five(5) paragraphs to empty allegations of “wrong aggregation of votes” and “votes padding,” which collectively involve about 6,622 votes- an amount patently insignificant to materially affect the outcome of an election in which 2nd respondent defeated Petitioner by we’ll over 500,000 votes”.

Arguments of Electoral Commission

In the arguments of lawyer for the Electoral Commission (1st Respondent), it is noted that, “In further denial of the Petitioner’s claims, 1st Respondent says that it complied with all the processes and procedures laid down by law for the conduct of the 7 December 2020 Presidential Election with fairness to every candidate and without malice, ill will or bias against anyone.

“1st Respondent maintains that in a bid to enhance transparency and public participation in the electoral process, it published all the Regional Election Summary Sheets (Form 12) on its website. A simple tabulation of the same would show that the 2nd Respondent indeed won the election as declared.

“1st Respondent repeats that the results of 7 December 2020 Presidential Election as declared on 9th December 2020 did not breach the Constitution and that the Petition has no merit whatsoever.”

The EC further states, “The Petition ought to be dismissed, also because Petitioner does not challenge the validity of the election conducted throughout all the 38,622 polling stations and the 311 special voting centres in the country, or contest the lawfulness of votes obtained by any of the parties to the Election. 1st Respondent adds that Petitioner has failed to indicate the exact number of votes and percentages that he or the other candidates ought to have obtained in comparison to the number of votes and percentages declared by 1st Respondent.”

“The 1st Respondent (EC) accordingly raises a preliminary legal objection to the Petition as being incompetent and not, as required by Article 64(1) of the Constitution and Rule 68(1) of the Supreme Court Rules, 1996 (C.I. 16) as amended, amounting to a challenge to the validity of the Presidential Election conducted by the 1st Respondent (EC) on 7th December 2020. 1st Respondent prays that the Petition and all the grounds in support thereof be summarily dismissed by this Honourable Court for not disclosing any reasonable cause of action,” lawyers of the EC posited in their answer to the petition of the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama.

Read below Akufo-Addo’s full election petition response:

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