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The court is at a loss – Chief Justice tells Tsatsu Tsikata

The Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah has told lead Counsel for the petitioner in the ongoing election petition hearing, Tsatsu Tsikata, on Friday, February 5, that the court was at a loss following his argument for a particular claim of the petitioner’s third witness, Rojo Mettle Nunoo.

Tsikata was arguing for the paragraph eight (8) of the witness statement of Mr Nunoo which states that “My colleague, Dr Michael Kpessa-Whyte, and, I on many occasions pointed out errors in the figures and words on the sheets that were brought in which ultimately affected totals and assigned results.

“This sometimes led to EC officials making phone calls on the basis of which they sought to explain and correct some of the things we pointed out.

“I cannot tell to whom those phone calls were made. I cannot tell if the calls were to EC officials to some other people who were also involved in collation process. There was no transparent process in this regard.”

Lawyer for the 2nd Respondent, Mr Akoto Ampaw had asked the court to dismiss this claim because it was not borne out of pleadings.

Objecting to Mr Ampaw’s request, Tsikata said “The witness is saying in the witness statement that ‘I cannot tell who the calls were made to, and that is a very honest statement.’

It was at this point that the Chief Justice came in and said “Section 60(3) of the Evidence Act said a witness may testify to a matter without proof of personal knowledge if no objection is raised by any party’. The court is at a loss whether this could have been raised in evidence that is all.

“We are talking of the last bit of the opposition, that was my worry because if that evidence is being led…and is not objected to then it will go in, but then, when a legitimate objection is raised, that was why I wanted to draw the court’s attention to that.We have gone beyond that so let us proceed.”

Mr Ampaw also wants paragraph five of the witness statement dismissed for the same reason he gave for paragraph 8.

Paragraph 5 of Mr Nunoo’s statement said: “The EC had a video documentary person recording the events in the strong room and I have no doubt that if that documentary is made available in its authentic version it will confirm what I am saying in this witness statement about things that occurred in the strong room.”

However, Tsiktata told the court that “Second witness said there was somebody taking video commentaries. That evidence was not objected to, that evidence is before you and we are respectfully submitting that what is stated in Paragraph 5 is no different from what is already before you about the video documentary.

“All that this witness is adding is that he is willing to put his credibility on the line so that if anybody wants to have recourse to the video they are entitled to.

“Depending on the cross-examination we may indeed come before you with an application that that video should be produced in court and played.”

 

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