President of policy think tank, IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe, has expressed disappointment in the Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss an amicus brief filed by them and three other policy think tanks to join a consolidated case in which the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and a Ghanaian citizen Mark Takyi Banson is asking the apex court to prevent the Electoral Commission (EC) from prohibiting the existing voters ID card as a valid prove of identity for the registration of a new voters register.
According to the bench, the amicus brief filed by the think tanks did not necessarily bring anything new to the case and previous utterances in the media landscape by the CSOs suggests that they are supportive of one party in the case and hence cannot be a neutral party.
The bench also wondered why the think tanks had not shown interest in the first writ regarding the NDC vs Attorney General and EC which also sought similar reliefs.
Speaking to journalists after the court ruling, Mr Cudjoe said although they accept the court’s decision, he was surprised their application for amicus brief was dismissed.
He said: “On the onset of this application, we did say we were at the benevolence more or less of the law so what they decide to do we will live with it. It's just that we’re disappointed though that they didn’t even consider the brief itself.
“We think they would have benefitted greatly from it but the laws have spoken and we can’t quarrel with that, we just have to live with it but I hope that the decision they arrive at eventually would be a decision everybody can live within this country otherwise I’m just disappointed and I’m sure my colleagues here are equally disappointed.”
The IMANI boss continued: “This was an introduction to how cases are determined in court. I was quite awed, even at some point I was laughing all through but I guess lawyers know their trade and the judges also know their trade so you can’t fault them, they did what they had to do but I think that to suggest that the amicus was just not neutral was a bit far-fetched really.”
The three other think tanks in the case are Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASPEA), Conservative Policy Research Center (CPRC) and Institute for Liberty and Policy Innovation (ILAPI).
Judgement on the substantive case has been set for tomorrow, Thursday, 25th June 2020.
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