Monday, December 31, 2012
It is clear that the more we look deeply into the NPP’s rejection of the outcome of the Presidential elections, the more we see hidden truths about why the party’s leaders and supporters are the way they are today, and where they have dragged matters to.
It is their constitutional right to use the judiciary to seek redress in this case; and it is our constitutional right too to interrogate the implications of what they have set out to do and how they do it. As citizens, we expect that our country will be ruled by those who deserve the people’s mandate. That is why what the NPP has begun doing since it became clear that its Akufo-Addo couldn’t set foot on Canaan must not be lost on us.
Indeed, he was in Jerusalem before the elections but the Walls of Jericho didn’t fall for him to enter the Promised Land when the bugles were blown at the polls. The lawsuit at the Supreme Court seeks to unravel why. An obviously intriguing pursuit in the labyrinth of the law, isn’t it?
We will continue to unpack that lawsuit filed by the NPP in pursuit of what it calls “justice” for its cause, which ultimately—as the party’s leaders hope and pray—will translate into the declaration of the defeated Akufo-Addo as the winner of the Presidential elections held earlier this month.
We acknowledge the zeal with which the NPP is pursuing this matter and point to the bloated optimism of its members that the Supreme Court will determine the case in their favour.
One may quickly ask, though: What is the basis of this bloated optimism? Very straightforward and easy to explain: documentary evidence (in terms of figures and video recordings of goings-on before, during, and after the elections).
The NPP leaders and supporters claim to have “incontrovertible evidence” of irregularities during the elections that have deprived their Akufo-Addo of an outright victory, citing figures that they themselves put together from about 24,000 polling stations (out of the nationwide 26,000) as the substance of their “incontrovertible evidence” with which to fight their case.
Why do they think that the Supreme Court will accept their “incontrovertible evidence” as the truth inviolate and reject the official election results certified and gazetted by the Electoral Commission, which was endorsed by all the international and local election monitors and the media?
Will the Supreme Court be so constrained by incompetence or mischief to see eye-to-eye with the NPP and its one-sided version of what happened at the polls and reject the official position of the constitutionally mandated institution charged with conducting the elections?
Why will the Supreme Court do so? Because it has NPP allies in its fold? Because it places the NPP’s partisan interests above the larger national one, considering the chaos that is likely to erupt if the Supreme Court acts imprudently to undermine the will of the voters, especially all those in the 8 out of the 10 regions that overwhelmingly endorsed President Mahama? Or even the hundreds of thousands in the two regions won by Akufo-Addo?
Lets remember that this quantum of “incontrovertible evidence” being propagated by the NPP runs counter to what the Electoral Commission officially released, based on which it gazetted President Mahama as the winner.
In tandem with the EC’s records, independent election monitors representing international and local institutions (CODEO) and the mass media also publicized results that they themselves had collated or gathered from authentic sources to confirm that the elections were free, fair, and transparent. So has the People’s National Convention, one of the contestants.
Faint hints of complaints have come from Paa Kwesi Nduom and his PPP, the CPP, and the NDP, but they haven’t followed up with any concrete action to prove their dissension with facts and figures. Nothing came from the UFP (Silence meaning consent in this case?).
The other contestants (Independent candidate Jacob Osei Yeboah, and even the disqualified independent female candidate, Madam Donkor) agreed with the official results and indicated their readiness to work with President Mahama if given the chance.
Only the NPP has gone to court because it can’t bear not seeing its Akufo-Addo in power. What for? Only God knows.
For the records, here is the substance on which the NPP’s petition (or lawsuit) number J1/6/13, filed last Friday, is based:
i. that 620,443 over voting occurred;
ii. that 456,933 people voted without verification;
iii. that 208,523 polling station results were not signed by EC presiding officers;
iv. that 50,278 polling centres had the same serial number; and
v. that in 3,841 polling centres, results written in words did not match the figures on the pink sheet.
The NPP's running mate Mahamudu Bawmia noted that in all, 1.3 million votes were wrongfully included in the tally, giving President Mahama an undue advantage. A member of the NPP’s legal team, Asante Bediatuo, claimed that 99.9% of the irregularities occurred in the strongholds of the NDC that boosted President Mahama’s electoral fortunes. Thus, the plaintiffs intend to prove these allegations and sway the Supreme Court to declare Akufo-Addo the winner instead.
Declaring him winner means that he will be installed in office as Ghana’s President even after the incumbent would have been so invested in office on January 7, 2013, unless the Supreme Court restrains the inauguration.
Everything indicates that the inauguration will come on as is being planned because the case hasn’t yet been listed for hearing nor will the Supreme Court give any order without first looking into the merit of the NPP’s petition. In any case, the respondents (President Mahama and the EC) have 10 days to respond to the lawsuit before the Supreme Court can decide when to begin sitting on the case.
Let those who are already optimistic of victory at the Supreme Court hasten slowly lest they fall head-over-heels in a worse circumstance. Ghana will continue to exist and thrive without Akufo-Addo in power.
If the NPP cannot provide enough security and be vigilant to prevent malpractices at the ordinary national exercise of general elections, where is the guarantee that when given the mandate it can secure the entire country, its natural and human resources, to ensure stability and growth in peace and tranquillity?
If Akufo-Addo had revealed to us any pragmatic agenda for retooling and strengthening state institutions under a government by him, the voters might have considered him favourably before the elections. He didn’t say anything assuring apart from the cacophonous howling and jabbering about free senior high school education.
Is this the person to be invested in office through the workings of the judiciary after the voters had exercised their free will to reject him? We will keep monitoring the situation and will definitely throw in our ideas as and when necessary, insults from the NPP members notwithstanding. Ghana deserves better than where these malcontents are pushing it.
No matter what happens, Ghanaians want to put the elections behind them and move on with their lives. Probably, with better planning, those who know how to do politics will get their mandate again at Election 2016.
Those chasing a mirage in the hot desert of the Supreme Court can go ahead to expend their energies and resources doing so now. By sundown, there will be no mirage ahead of them anymore. Politics’ labours lost, indeed!!
I shall return…
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