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2020 election petition: Amenuvor & Associates and Akufo-Addo, Prempeh & Co to represent respondents

Two leading law firms – Amenuvor & Associates and Akufo-Addo, Prempeh & Co – have filed notice of appearance to represent the respondents

Two leading law firms, Amenuvor & Associates and Akufo-Addo, Prempeh & Co, on Monday filed notice of appearance at the Supreme Court. The move essentially informs the Supreme Court that the firms will be representing the respondents to the Election 2020 petition filed by the presidential candidate of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, following his defeat in the December 2020 poll.

Amenuvor & Associates (led by Justin Amenuvor) will represent the Electoral Commission (EC), the first respondent, and Akufo-Addo, Prempeh & Co (led by Akoto Ampaw), will represent the second respondent, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.


The filing of the notice of appearance meets the terms of Article 64 of the 1992 constitution and the Supreme Court Rules 1996 (CI 16), as amended by CI 74 and CI 99.

The lawyers for the respondents are now expected to file their respective responses to the former president John Mahama’s petition challenging the result of the 7 December 2020 presidential election.

On 9 December 2020, Jean Mensa, the chairperson of the Electoral Commission and returning officer for that election, declared President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo the winner.

Background

The presidential candidate for the National Democratic Congress in the 2020 general election, John Dramani Mahama, officially filed a petition at the Supreme Court on 30 December 2020 to challenge the 7 December presidential election result.

A statement from the NDC after the filing said: “The National Democratic Congress wishes to inform the general public that at about 12pm this afternoon [sic], the leader and presidential candidate of the party, H E John Dramani Mahama, caused his lawyers to file a petition in the Supreme Court of Ghana to challenge the 2020 presidential election results declaration by the chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Ghana.”

It added: “The petition was filed pursuant to the party‘s audit of the 2020 presidential results and extensive consultations with the National Executive Committee and Council of Elders of the party.”

According to the NDC, the petition details grave violations of the 1992 constitution by the Electoral Commission and its chairperson/returning officer for the presidential election, Jean Adukwei Mensa, in carrying out their constitutional and legal responsibilities.

It seeks, among other things, a declaration from the Supreme Court to the effect that the purported declaration of the results of the 2020 presidential election on 9 December 2020 is unconstitutional, null and void and of no effect whatsoever.

On 9 December 2020 Jean Mensa declared President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo the president-elect, announcing that he had secured 51.3% of the valid votes cast. The result of the presidential election has since been gazetted. The NDC, however, says it cannot accept the result because it is “flawed”.

Wilberforce Asare / Asaase Radio

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