A member of President Akufo-Addo’s legal team, Frank Davies has taken a jibe at former President John Mahama and his legal team for failing to obey the Supreme Court’s orders to file witness statements by Thursday, January 21.
Addressing the press after the fourth hearing of the election petition on Tuesday, Mr Davies said no trained legal practitioner willfully disobeys the orders of any court let alone the Apex Court.
His comment comes after a member of the petitioner’s legal team, Tony Lithur informed the court today that Mr Mahama had opted not to file witness statements as ordered by the court due to pending applications he had filed, including a stay of proceedings and an application for the apex court to review the dismissal of his permission to serve the EC some 12 interrogatories.
But reacting to this, Mr Davies said the judiciary has its own rules, which they apply to the letter, as such, the petitioner and his legal team can not go about the proceedings as they want.
He insisted that the Mr Mahama and his lawyers have no unfettered right to appear before the court with a “needless application” they claimed to have filed
“You [Mr Mahama] are coming to Court for a discretionary remedy; you have been ordered to file a witness statement, and you claim you have filed stay of proceedings so you choose to disobey the orders of the court, yet you filed the application as late as yesterday, and you want the court to entertain it.
“That is not what trained lawyers are taught to do. If you disobey the orders of the Court, it comes with its consequences. The Court has given them, the last opportunity, let us see what they will do,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court served a notice that it has the power to dismiss an election petition if its orders are not obeyed.
Commenting on this, President Akufo-Addo’s legal representative said, the court has been very gracious and lenient to the petitioner by giving him another opportunity to rectify his mistake.
He, however, advised the legal counsel of Mr Mahama not to deliberately try and delay the election petition process in order to create a media spectacle.
In his view, “The Supreme Court is a very busy place. The Supreme Court is not a forum for organised, rehearsed, and choreographed theatricals or melodrama. It is a place for real, hard, and serious legal work. It is not for flying literature, long prose, and rather dull English, devoured of any legal merit.
“I want to advise my colleagues at the other side that ‘if, it isn’t broken, don’t attempt to fix it.’ We are ready for them on Thursday.”