Election petition: Supreme Court dismisses John Mahama petition

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The Supreme Court has dismissed John Mahama’s challenge to the 2020 presidential election results in the election petition trial.

Akufo-Addo defeated Mahama in the said election to secure another four-year term; collecting 51.302% of the votes cast against the latter’s 47.359%.

The votes difference between the two candidates stood at 517, 231, representing a four percentage point, one of the highest since 1996.

Presenting the court’s judgment on Thursday, March 4, 2021, the Chief Justice, Justice Anin Yeboah said President Nana Akufo-Addo obtained more than 50% of the total valid votes.

Election Petition

He further added the chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Jean Mensa, had the right to make corrections to her errors during the declaration on December 9, 2021.

According to him, from the cross-examination of Johnson Asiedu Nketia, the petitioner’s first witness, there is no doubt that the petitioner knew the right figures.

He said the petitioner’s submission that there was no winner in the election does not find favour before the court and that the threshold to declare a president should be based on the total valid votes cast and not the total vote cast.

The Chief Justice said it is wrong for the petitioner to hold the EC to the error made and that the petition is dismissed and that it has no merit.

“We have, therefore, no reason to order a re-run of the 2020 elections,” he stated. The court set up five issues for determining the case and they include;

1. Whether or not the petition discloses any reasonable cause of action

2. Whether or not based on the data contained in the declaration of the 1st Respondent (EC), no candidate obtained more than 50% of the valid votes cast as required by article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution

3. Whether or not the 2nd Respondent still met the article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution threshold by the exclusion or inclusion of the Techiman South constituency Presidential Election Results of 2020

4. Whether or not the declaration by the 1st Respondent dated the 9th of December was in violation of article 63 (3) of the 1992 constitution.

5. Whether or not the alleged vote padding and other errors complained of by the petitioner affected the outcome of the Presidential Election results of 2020.