The 2020 Presidential Election Petition has been heard. The court on fourth March 2021 gave its judgment. A court’s last judgment particularly by the Supreme Court is to acquire conclusion to a matter question, however I keep thinking about whether most of Ghanaians will hold the view that the residue has really chosen every one of the happenings of the 2020 Presidential Elections.
This article will try to contend that Ghanaians have been seriously let somewhere near the court in its inability to practice its watchfulness in light of a legitimate concern for integrity and responsibility, two grave revelations and assertions Ghanaians conceded to in the 1992 Constitution. Regardless of whether the court practiced its attentiveness in light of a legitimate concern for equity is another matter.
In this article I will zero in on legal watchfulness which as per the Oxford Dictionary of Law is: “The force of the court to make some stride, award a cure, or concede proof or not as it might suspect fit”. Article 296 of the 1992 Constitution bury alia gives that: “Where in this Constitution or in some other law optional force is vested in any individual or authority-
(a) that optional force will be considered to infer an obligation to be reasonable and real;
(b) the activity of the optional force will not be discretionary, impulsive or one-sided wilt by disdain, bias or individual abhorrence and will be as per fair treatment
of the law”
At the just finished Presidential Election Petition, various applications were documented by the Petitioner and practically every one of them were excused by the court. However, I gave particular consideration to one specific application. The Electoral Commission or the first Respondent had chosen not to affirm after the Petitioner had shut his case. They likewise continued to close their case contending that the Petitioner had not released any weight of confirmation justifying their reaction. The court concurred with the Electoral Commission. The court additionally concurred with the second Respondent who had likewise chosen not for give proof. The court in this way controlled in support of themselves. The excusal of the use of the Petitioner contending that the first Respondent had effectively chosen to affirm and consequently couldn’t resile from that political decision combined with the hesitance of the court to welcome the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission on its own movement to give proof hastened this current article. Tact is contemporary with assertion or injustice. The activity of optional force in this way can just yield two results; a reasonable and authentic result or a subjective and whimsical result.
Tragically, the choice by the Supreme Court to maintain the refusal of the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Mrs. Jean Adukwei Mensa to affirm at the preliminary despite her sworn oaths showing her status to profit herself for questioning, and furthermore not to call her to give proof on the court’s own movement was an abandonment of obligation by the court in my view. A great many Ghanaians stuck to their TVs following the live procedures including this essayist felt disillusioned and hard done by the court for not practicing its forces under Section 58 of the Courts Act, 1993 (Act 459). The segment gives that: “In any procedures, and at any phase of the procedures, a court either on its own movement or on the use of any gathering, may call any individual to go to give proof, or to deliver any archive in his ownership or passages from it subject to any establishment or law and order”.
The Electoral Commission is the body dressed with the obligation of directing and overseeing public decisions, and the lead of the Commission when not appropriately released has the capability of destabilizing this country. The ejection of savagery that overwhelmed Ivory Coast in late past after a contested political race results is a phenomenal model.
Subsequently, what was being investigated at the Supreme Court fundamentally was the lead and execution of the Electoral Commission and specifically its director who serves as the Returning Officer for the Presidential Election.
Given the key pretended by the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, it was simply reasonable and authentic for her to have been heard and to disclose to Ghanaians the figures she pronounced on ninth December, 2020 and the unsigned public statement gave on the tenth of December, 2020 that looked to address the figures she had reported on ninth December, 2020.
It was the assumption for Ghanaians that the court would have welcomed the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission on its own movement to affirm and to represent her stewardship. That would have been the legitimate activity in light of a legitimate concern for equity, honesty and responsibility. Never throughout the entire existence of the fourth Republic has the aftereffects of an official political race been pronounced in blunder and an unsigned public statement gave the next day to address the implied incidental mistake. Which law in Ghana permits announced aftereffects of a public political decision, all the more so an official political race to be changed by a press articulation? This is obviously a damaging infraction of Article 49(2) and (3) of the 1992 Constitution and guideline 44(10) of the Public Elections Regulations, 2020 (C.I. 127), the laws overseeing public races in this country which the Electoral Commission can’t wander.
Without question, the court has conveyed its decision on the matter, however that administering leaves a messiness of uncertainty and a storm of unanswered inquiries in the personalities of numerous a Ghanaian. A circumstance I consider as an unalloyed injustice on our majority rules system and Ghanaians all in all, and the court can’t get away from fault.
On the off chance that in the assessment of the court, holding Mrs. Jean Mensa to her sworn affirmation to affirm will uphold the instance of the Petitioner thus will have none of it, at that point I am apprehensive the court had rather favored one side in the matter. Furthermore, a shocking event, which outrages the sense and sensibilities of the organization of equity which requires equity conveyance to be completed without dread or favor, friendship or malevolence. Regardless of whether Jean Mensa had not sworn an oath to affirm at the preliminary, the court had an obligation to Ghanaians to consider her on the court’s own movement for her to affirm as a public official whose direct was being addressed.
Equity radiates from individuals says the 1992 Constitution and will be managed for the sake of the Republic by the Judiciary which will be free and subject just to the Constitution. Subsequently any decision of our courts specifically where the optional force of the legal executive is called upon, the activity of that power in all cases should target securing and protecting crucial common liberties and opportunity, solidarity and steadiness of this nation as embraced by our Constitution.
It is unbelievable that an entire Presidential Election Petition at the pinnacle court of this land can reach a conclusion without an expression of declaration from the Returning Officer for the Presidential Election who had even sworn affirmations on two distinct events that she will affirm. What a disappointment! Her proof to all plans and purposes ought to have been seen by the court as a public task and responsibility to Ghanaians as a public official whose pay and perquisites are paid for by the citizen.
A sworn affirmation is a serious promise on paper that a managerial body or a court in light of a legitimate concern for equity and value should offer impact to affidavits contained in that.
Jean Mensa made a solemn vow that she will affirm, on the off chance that she chooses to do a U-turn that will add up to sheer ploy and skulduggery. The court by attesting that it won’t force her to affirm notwithstanding her sworn affirmation to do as such essentially has supported slippery fraud. An individual driving from Tema to Accra on the motorway can’t do a U-turn. Any such U-turn will be illicit and rude driving that a cop on the spot will capture. Be that as it may, fortunate Jean Mensa did a particularly U-turn outrageously before the seat and in the general visibility however those commanded to make a move shockingly chose not to see and kept a devout quietness on her notorious activity. Would it be able to be contended that by this choice a sworn oath has lost its utility worth?
I don’t discover the activity of the court’s optional ability to maintain Jean Mensa’s choice not to affirm as one that bodes solidarity and security for this country. I’m attempting to see why seven autonomous leaning board individuals from the seat welcome to practice their circumspection for An or B and practically on all events they practiced that watchfulness together and severally for B. The unanimity of thought and thinking of the seat in its decision on every one of the utilizations of the Petitioner gives off an impression of being an odd numerical routineness which opposes regular intellectual comprehension of the common individual in the city.
The activity of optional force discovers persuasive articulation in the astuteness of Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:23 where he reprimands his devotees on how such powers should be applied. He says: “Everything is legal for me, yet everything is not catalyst, everything is legal for me but rather all things enlighten not”.
The court has each privilege to practice its optional powers in any case it figures fit and that choice might be legitimate, yet will that choice though legal pass as convenient and will that choice additionally enlighten. “Illuminate” is inseparable from words, for example, create, inspire, edify, teach and so on The inquiry is, was the choice of the court convenient and if so has it enlightened the country in any structure or shape? More or less, optional forces ought to never be utilized such that will contort and upset the decency of our majority rule government and law and order.
The court in its last judgment followed through on fourth March, 2021, collectively excused the request as having no legitimacy. The court intensely depended on the proof of the Petitioner’s