The NPP’s lead counsel, Philip Addison, has again proven that he is bent on doing anything within his means to cheat out in the on-going Supreme Court (SC) petition case challenging the results of the 2012 presidential election, which Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo lost out to President John Mahama.
In that obsessive anxiety, Mr Addison on Thursday, July 11, produced in court an extract of the voter register from the Mampong Constituency which eventually turned out to be a forged document.
Mr Addison, who has kept the Electoral Commissioner, Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, in the witness box for several weeks in his quest to rattle the former to cave in, was sent reeling for cover when Dr Afari-Gyan told the court that the document produced by Philip Addison was highly dubious.
The claim by Dr Afari-Gyan rattled Philip Addison so much so that, he hurriedly withdrew the extract which he had desperately sought to tender.
Mr Addison gave the two page extract of the voter register to Dr Afari-Gyan last week to verify. But immediately Dr Afari-Gyan saw the document, he told the court that he does not believe any voter register is two-paged, therefore, he sought the court’s permission to verify the information.
Getting to the end of Thursday’s court proceedings, Mr Addison asked Dr Afari-Gyan if he had been able to verify that extract of the voter register from Mampong. That was when Dr Afari-Gyan responded in the affirmative, but then told the court that he has some misgivings on the extract.
Dr Afari-Gyan told the court that, first of all, the cover sheet on the NPP’s extract was totally different from the cover sheet of the original voter register.
Secondly, Dr Afari-Gyan told the court that after he had taken hold of the NPP’s extract, he cross-checked the information against the original voter register, but the information he found was very startling. None of the information in those two documents corresponds with each other!
Dr Afari-Gyan then told a startled court that he found out that all the names the NPP has put together claiming it was page 5 and 6 of the voter register at the Mampong Constituency were false. He stated emphatically that of all the 365 names in the voter register in the Mampong Constituency, there was not even a single one that matches the names in the extract produced by Philip Addison.
To further stoke his assertions, Dr Afari-Gyan stated that he did a due diligence on the extract and found out that the names rather belonged to another voter register. Even the names in the NPP’s extract were scattered all over the second voter register and did not constitute a composite page 5 and 6 of that register as the petitioners were alleging.
This led the respondents to believe that the document produced by Philip Addison was deliberately forged to deceive the court. Indeed, they believe that somebody picked out the names of the voters and put them together, and deceitfully numbered them as page 5 and 6 of the Mampong Constituency voter register.
That was why Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, lead counsel for the NDC, told the court that if the court was going to allow the document to be tendered by the NPP, whoever was involved in the forgery should be brought to court to be cross-examined.
Mr Philip Addison may have heard enough of the forged document. He immediately decided to withdraw it for fear that it will create a serious problem for him. Even though the justices agreed to the withdrawal of the document by Philip Addison, this incident once again created a buzz surrounding the long unwinding cross-examination of Dr Afari-Gyan by the former, which seems not to be landing any solid punches from the NPP quarters.
The forged document by the NPP has also raised some eyebrows from those following the petition case. Many recall the reasons assigned by the KPMG officials about their refusal to give soft copies of their audit count of the pink sheets to the NPP, fearing that, it could easily be doctored or manipulated to create confusion in court.
Mr Addison may have gotten away with this, but he may not be lucky next time, as the respondents have vowed to critically examine any document that the petitioners throw at them.