Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, a legal practitioner and member of the ruling New Patriotic Party, is wondering if having the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission(EC), Jean Mensa, in the witness box will in any way change the presidential figures for the December 7 elections in favour of John Dramani Mahama.
Mr Mahama and the NDC are in court challenging the declaration of President Nana Akufo-Addo as the winner of the 2020 presidential election.
To testify or not?
But speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, Mr Otchere-Darko wondered why the lawyers for the petitioner, led by Tsatsu Tsikata, are so bent on getting Jean Mensa into the witness box before they can properly make their case.
“The circumstances are very different. In 2013, John Mahama won by 5,574,761 votes and that was 50.7%. Akufo-Addo got 5,248,898; that was 47.74%. In order for John Mahama to drop below the 50% threshold, you needed to take away 77,131 from them – just that. The difference between Akufo-Addo and John Mahama was 325,863.
“What was the evidence presented before the court? The petitioner said that there were more than two million duplicate pink sheets, which then goes to the heart of the authenticity of the elections. And then they spoke about polling stations that they were not aware of. That also goes to the credibility of the results from those areas. They spoke about over-voting in 1722 polling stations. The spoke about voting without biometric verification and when you look at all these, the sum total, even when you take over-voting alone, that would have dropped John Mahama down,” Mr Otchere-Darko said.
Over 500,000 votes difference
He added that when one takes voting without verification alone, that would have dropped the former President below 50 per cent.
“So there were all these issues. On the face of it, if the Electoral Commissioner at the time was to elect to say that ‘I am not going to go into the witness box’, that would have been suicidal.
“But in this case, you are talking about less than 5,000 votes that you are challenging. That’s all it is. So, assuming Jean Mensa goes to the box, will her testimony add to John Mahama’s votes or take away from Akufo-Addo’s votes? And what will that do for them?” he quizzed