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Nothing to gain by duplicating exhibits – Bawumia tells Tsatsu

Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, 2nd Petitioner and main witness for the petitioners in the ongoing Supreme Court case challenging the declared outcome of the December 7th Presidential Elections, Thursday, countered suggestions by the Counsel for the National Democratic Congress, Tsatsu-Tsikata that pink sheet exhibits had been deliberately duplicated to deceive the court, stating emphatically that the petitioners had nothing to gain by duplicating exhibits.

Dr. Bawumia made the statement while being cross-examined by Mr Tsikata, who has been cross– examining the witness for the past three days.

Counsel Tsikata has spent the entire duration of hiss cross examination pointing out some duplication and mislabeling in the pile of exhibits submitted to the respondents by the petitioners as evidence for the irregularities variously witnessed in around 11,000 polling stations across the country which affected the conduct and outcome of the December polls.

On each occasion, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, just like he told Lawyer Tony Lithur, counsel for John Mahama, informed the court that though there might have been duplicates in the exhibits submitted to the court, such duplications did not affect the analysis as each polling station was used once.

The lawyer for the 3rd Respondents after pointing out a number of these duplicates on the day suggested that the petitioners had deliberately duplicated the exhibits to deceive the court by creating the impression that there were more than 11,000 polling stations being challenged.

However, Dr Bawumia informed Counsel Tsikata that, the petitioners had no reason to do that, and that any attempt at misleading the court would have meant that such duplications would have ended up being used in the analysis.

“There is absolutely no need for duplicating these exhibits to deceive the court. As I keep saying, these duplications arose out of the quantity of work which had to be done. In the end,  we printed and photocopied over 500,000 documents, but these duplications are not in the analysis. In the analysis, each polling station is used only once. So there is nothing to gain by duplicating exhibits when in the end it does not affect our analysis or the votes being challenged,” Dr Bawumia noted.

He continued, “Counsel would rather be misleading himself if he is of the thinking that these duplications arose because we are trying to deceive the court.” Tsatsu Tsikata, as has become a norm for lawyers of the respondents, also focused lengthily on the issue of polling agents who represented the NPP and who subsequently signed the results on the pink sheets. He sought to suggest that once those agents signed the results, they endorsed its accuracy and fairness. However, Dr. Bawumia reminded Tsatsu that all the agents did was to attest to the accuracy of the record on the pink sheet and that even if the agents signed, their actions did not validate the illegalities and irregularities evident on the face of the pink sheets.

The hearing of the election petition case currently before the Supreme Court has been adjourned to May 6, 2013.

The case was adjourned after about five hours of cross examination of Dr Bawumia by lawyer Tsatsu Tsikata.

Day 10 of the hearing of the substantive case saw Dr Bawumia answer questions targeted at the data represented in the affidavit evidence submitted by the petitioners.

Lawyer Tsikata sought to prove that the petitioners had duplicated, triplicated and quadruplicated some of the pink sheets submitted as evidence.

Before the court rose, Justice Atuguba instructed the lawyers representing the petitioners and respondents to “sort out the exhibits in the order you intend to submit it.”

He instructed them to meet ahead of the 9:30 hearing time to work out all outstanding issues relating to documents they intended to tender into evidence.

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