Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, the 2016 Presidential nominee of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Monday affirmed that the stability and progress of Ghana and the enhancement of democracy are the motivation for the Electoral Petition.
“We demonstrated clearly that it was not the ambitions of Akufo Addo, or the fortunes of the NPP, that we sought to promote but we proved to the world that we were willing and able to submerge our individual and partisan preferences for the common good.
“It must be pointed out that the sanctity of the ballot is and must be supreme,” Nana Akufo-Addo.”
Nana Akufo Addo said these in a statement to mark the Third Anniversary of the Supreme Court judgement on the Presidential Election Petition. .
On August, 29, 2013, the Supreme Court delivered a majority judgement that brought an end to the election petition, which was instituted by the late Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey, a former NPP Chairman and Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, the Election 2012 running mate of Nana Akufo-Addo.
They challenged the validity of the results of the 2012 Presidential Election. However, the majority decision of the Supreme Court rejected the challenge.
Nana AkufoAddo explained that after the proceedings, which lasted eight months, Ghana came out with her democratic credentials enhanced.
“I said, on the day the judgement was delivered, that everything in my bones, in the way I was brought up and in how I have conducted my life thus far, made it imperative that I accept a decision of the highest court of our land, even though I might disagree with it.
“I thank the Lord that He gave me that inner strength to display the leadership when required,” he said.
He explained that the verdict from the majority on the Court was clear, and to the effect that, regardless of the infractions or irregularities that might happen on Election Day, ‘what happens at the polling station is sacred and the results declared there will not be reversed.’
“We, in the NPP, have taken that message to heart,” he stated.
“It is the expression of preference involved in the casting of the ballot that is sacred – the rest of the activities are, at best, administrative exercises.
“The count, the collation, the transmission and the declaration of results cannot and should not be more important than the sacred, God-given right of a citizen expressing his or her choice represented by the casting of his or her ballot.”
He said the strength of any democracy was very much determined by the credibility of its electoral system.
“It is in our collective interest that we ensure that the rules and regulations for the conduct of elections are fair and transparent and that we all develop respect for them”.
He said there should be no lingering questions about the legitimacy of an election, and the winning candidate at the end of the process should receive the unalloyed support of all.
“That is how we can strengthen our democracy and the peace and stability of our nation”.
Nana Akufo-Addo stated: “I believe I can, in all humility, provide, with God’s guidance and the assistance of a capable team, the leadership that is needed to return Ghana onto the path of progress and prosperity.”
He, therefore, called on the electorates to entrust the leadership of the nation with him and the NPP.
“I am appealing to Ghanaians to repose their confidence in me in December, and together we shall make the Black Star of Africa rise and shine again”.
The nine-member panel of the Supreme Court who sat on the Presidential Election Petition by decided that the incumbent President John Dramani Mahama of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), was validly elected and declared the President of the Republic of Ghana in the Presidential Poll of 7th and 8th December 2012.
In reading the verdict dismissing the petitioners’ claim, the presiding judge, Justice William Atuguba said: “Well, this is the decision we have arrived at: “Upon a scrutiny of the petition, we found that the issues to be determined are as set out at page 125 of the counsel for the petitioners’ written address were as follows: Over voting; Voting without biometric verification; Absence of the signature of the presiding officer; Duplicate serial numbers, that is to say occurrence of the same serial numbers on pink sheets for two different polling stations.”
The rest were: Duplicate polling station codes, that is to say occurrence of different results of pink sheets for polling stations with the same polling station codes; and Unknown polling stations, that is to say results recorded for polling stations that are not part of 26,002 polling stations provided by the second respondent in the petition.
“We unanimously dismiss the claims relating to duplicate serial numbers, duplicate polling station codes, and unknown polling stations, that is for short.
“Atuguba, Adinyira, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, and Akoto-Bamfo, dismiss the claim of over voting.
“Atuguba, Adinyira, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, Akoto-Bamfo, dismiss the claims relating to absence of signature of presiding officer.
“Atuguba, Adinyira, Dotsey, Baffoe-Bonnie, Gbadegbe, Akoto-Bamfo dismiss the claim relating to voting without biometric verification.
“Ansah, Owusu and Anim Yeboah grant all the three claims, that is to say, over voting, absence of presiding officers’ signature and voting without biometric verification, annul the votes involved and order a rerun of the affected areas.
“Dotsey JSC grants the claim of over-voting but has provided a road-map in his judgement as in the figures of votes to be ascertained and cancelled and a re-run of the areas affected.
“Dotsey JSC upholds the claim relating to absence of presiding officers’ signatures on the pink sheets cancels the results concerned and orders a rerun of the areas affected.
“Baffoe-Bonnie JSC grants the claim of voting without biometric verification cancels the votes involved and orders a rerun of the areas affected.
“In the circumstances the overall effect is that the first respondent was validly elected and the petition is therefore dismissed.”