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Judgement in error

Tue, 3 Sep 2013 Source: Yahaya, Tanko Ali

It was an anxious Thursday, and Ghana was at a standstill. The streets of the nation were virtually empty. uncertainty was an albatross around the neck of many a Ghanaian, except some few 'influential s' who cl added in white, as if, they were signaling to their supporters and the nation in general that they already had the knowledge of the petition out come from the 'influenced'.

By 10 am, the Chief Justice's hall was filled to capacity, as the nine Justices were still locked in their chambers, which resulted in various speculations, including a conspiracy to sacrifice Justice for the sake of the so called peace.

No sooner had the Justices took to their seats, after many hours in their chambers, than Justice Atuguba begun to read the Judgement.

As the Judgement was being pronounced, it appeared that most of the Justices were avoiding the eyes of the audience.

The usual sense of authority and commanding voice, with which Justice Atuguba used to announced a verdict was surprisingly missing.

The apprehension that characterized the action of the announcer, gave me a rude awakening that despite the powers that the constitution gives to the Justices, they were still humans like us. Interestingly, the verdict we have been waiting for several hours ended in less than ten minutes.

For a case of this magnitude, one expected the Justices to have provided the whole reason for their Judgement that very day, in order to avoid, suspicions, insinuations, innuendos, and speculations. It came to pass that the electoral petition was dismissed, and for that matter, "error" president Mahama was validly elected, as it was earlier declared by the disgraced and mendacious chairman of the electoral commission, Dr.Kwadwo Afari Djan. As it Stands now the verdict which was also announced in "error" by Justice Atuguba has become an authority which will guide/misguide future electoral disputes. Unfortunately, a judicial precedent had been set, where by an error declaration of a president, be it clerical, administrative, or trans positional error is valid.

From now on serial numbers and signatures are insignificant in our electoral process. Would it not be disastrous if statutory provisions and rules of engagement can be abused and go unpunished after elections?

Mind you, any electoral reform shall be subjective to this very supreme court ruling, and that is my greatest fear. Over voting whether classical or contemporary seems ambiguous for now. The Biometric verification system is now reduced to nothing but a Trojan horse which benefits the manipulator.

Now it seems that you can now manipulate the electoral system and get away with it, unless you are caught on the spot. On the face of the verdict, Elections in Ghana whether it will ever be the same or not, is about the survival of the fittest, because the end will justify the means whether fair or foul. The court of public opinion and the world in general, who watched the court proceedings, may have found the petition meritorious, but those who derive power from the constitution to give judgement may give the verdict other wise, in their own wisdom. What ever i t is, we are waiting for the full Judgement, upon which we shall wage a merciless, constructive, and fearless criticism. The petitioners must take consolation from the fact that they have succeeded in exposing the mendacity and the duplicitous schemes of Dr. Kwadwo Afari Djan, through out the court proceedings.

If the powers that be, erred in granting you justice, posterity will grant you a fair and perfect Justice on a silver platter.

Sacrificing Justice for peace is not a panacea for the elimination of chaos and animosity, it is nothing, but the postponement of anarchy, lawlessness and mayhem to another time. What happened to principles? Why this deafening silence from the voice of conscience, and that of reason?

For how long must we allow some loopholes to continue to linger on our system, where by, those in authority capitalize to abuse and oppress their political opponent? Justice Atuguba named Justice Baffoe Bonnie, as one of the judges who dismissed the case of voting without biometric verification.

The same Justice Baffoe Bonney was also on record to have been named as a judge who uphold the voting without biometric verification irregularity. Which is Which? Ex-convict Tsatsu Tsikata "the the thief" ,the lead counsel for the NDC, on the 31st of August, in an interview with TV3, took on Justice Anim Yeboah, and accused him of bias and unprofessional conduct.

Tsatsu has opened the Pandora's box, and I dare challenge the Supreme court to crack the whip, other wise, we shall take on Justice Atuguba and others who were appointed by Rawlings and the late president Mills, who voted against the petition in equal measure.

There was another classical example of over-voting, even among the final arbiters, concerning Justice Baffoe Bonney. Allah is the ultimate Judge, and he shall surely judge each and every one of us according to our deeds. After all, what we do in this temporal life, echoes in the here after.

Tanko Ali Yahaya, Independent Minded Zongorians. skiliwonda@gmail.com

Columnist: Yahaya, Tanko Ali