NASTY SCENES erupted at the Supreme Court in Accra on Thursday morning when two top officials of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and New Patriotic Party (NPP), nearly traded punches over voodoo known in local parlance as ‘juju.’
Anita De Souza, the NDC National Women’s Organizer, openly hurled a barrage of insults at Stephen Amoah aka ‘Sticker’ on suspicions that the NPP member had tried using ‘juju’ against her and the NDC.
The said incident happened in the court room where the NPP is contesting the results of the 2012 presidential polls, a few minutes before proceeding got underway.
It was the day Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, the second petitioner, was cross-examined by President John Mahama’s lawyer, Tony Lithur.
The open outbursts of Anita attracted the attention of other people in court, DAILY GUIDE learnt.
The NDC top official said Sticker had tried rubbing a substance suspected to be ‘juju’ on her chair in the court room, but she was quick to detect it.
However, Sticker vehemently denied the accusation.
Anita De Souza, in an interview with Kofi Asante of Nhyira FM in Kumasi, said Stephen Amoah intentionally sat on her (Anita’s) seat in the court room for ‘juju’ purposes.
She claimed she saw Sticker murmuring some words as he sat on her chair, so she confronted the NPP man, asking why he decided to sit on her chair and what he was about to do.
Juju vrs Prayers
Anita De Souza claimed Sticker begged her when she confronted him, sternly warning the NPP and Sticker not to try their ‘juju’ practices on her since it would not work.
She claimed the NPP was counting on ‘juju’ to win the case, and that the NDC was being guided by fervent prayers; therefore NPP’s attempt to use ‘juju’ against the NDC in the petition would come to naught.
She said Sticker always visited the court so he was aware the seat belonged to her (Anita) yet he sat on it for obvious reasons.
But in a sharp rebuttal, Stephen Amoah, a staunch Christian who worships with the Calvary Charismatic Centre (CCC) in Kumasi, vehemently denied visiting the court with any ‘juju’ substance.
Telling his side of the story, he said it was his first visit to the Supreme Court since the case started, adding that he did not know that the seat in contention belonged to Anita as she was claiming.
Mr Amoah said he was heading towards the place allocated for the NPP when a leading member of the NDC called him for a short conversation.
He said he sat on the chair which Anita claimed belonged to her for a few minutes, as he chatted with the NDC man.
Minutes after he had left and went to occupy his seat at the place allocated for the NPP, an angry-looking Anita approached him and started insulting him for sitting on her chair.
Sticker said Anita only complained about his decision to sit on her chair, noting that the NDC Women’s Organizer did not say anything about ‘juju’ in the court room.
He said he did not reply harshly to Anita’s outbursts in the court room.
The NPP activist said in an interview with DAILY GUIDE that he apologized to Anita for sitting on her chair for peace to prevail, adding that he was utterly shocked about Anita suddenly accusing him of engaging in ‘juju.’
Sticker said what happened in court was not serious enough to generate even a debate between him and Anita.
He suspected the NDC and Anita were aware they would lose the case, so they wanted to create chaotic scenes in court to disrupt proceedings.
He told the NDC and Anita in particular that their ploy of causing agitation in court to disrupt the smooth flow of proceedings had been uncovered by the NPP so they would never fall prey to it.
Amoah said after 10 years in active politics, he was experienced enough to detect a trap being set by his political opponents, noting that Anita’s wish was for him to also respond harshly to her barrage of insults “but I detected it so her conspiracy failed woefully.”
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has frowned at the abrasive cross-examination style of Tony Lithur.
Apparently, the nine-member panel of justices hearing the case was not exactly amused about Tony Lithur’s monotonous five-hour cross-examination of the star witness of the petitioners, Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia.
On Friday April 19, 2013, a statement signed by Justice William A. Atuguba, president of the panel and titled, “The mode of continuation of cross-examination of 2nd Petitioner on pink sheets”, the Supreme Court indicated that it would not tolerate unnecessary waste of time from counsel, as they cross-examined witnesses in the case.
Tony Lithur and other lawyers were asked to give advance soft-copies of exhibits they wanted to interrogate on, to spare the bench the ordeal they were subjected to during Thursday’s proceedings.
“In order to expedite the hearing of the petition, the panel hereby directs that the cross-examination on the pink sheets be continued as follows: Counsel for the 1st Respondent (President Mahama) do list out the residue of the pink sheets in the manner here to be identified by him in his cross-examination of the 2nd petitioner (Dr Bawumia) which he claims were duplicated, in their mode and manner of generation and extent of their user by the petitioners for the purposes of proof of their petition,” Justice Atuguba wrote.
In his bid to prove that the petitioners, led by the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the 2012 elections, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, had mischievously duplicated the famed “Pink Sheets” to show evidence of alleged electoral malpractices, Tony Lithur physically pulled out about 40 Pink Sheets which he believed were duplicated.
The process was basically a one-way interrogation; the President’s lawyer pulled out a sheet and passed it around the court and afterwards asked Dr. Bawumia in the witness box to verify if the sheets were deliberately duplicated.
Each time he was asked, Dr Bawumia, an Economist, denied. “No matter how hard you try, you will not be able to show any duplication,” the witness was forced to retort at a point during the one-way cross-examination.
After the long drawn stalemate, Tony Lithur charged at Dr. Bawumia in a desperate attempt to lure him to slip and admit to the presumed duplication of evidence. “I suggest to you that you deliberately duplicated these pink sheets to deceive the court,” he said.
Credit: Daily Guide