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Politics of Thursday, 23 May 2013

Source: The Chronicle

Don’t make mockery of Tsatsu - Buabeng Asamoah

A member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) legal team, Mr. Buabeng Asamoah, has asked supporters of the party to refrain from ridiculing Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata, lead counsel for the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the ongoing electoral petition at the Supreme Court, over his supposed frustrations in court.

Mr. Buabeng Asamoah asserted that supporters of the party should understand the kind of problem his senior colleague, Mr. Tsikata, was going through, having to defend “a bad case”, and refrain from casting insinuations at him.

The NPP legal spokesperson speculated that the lead counsel for the ruling party was in a very tight position, in the face of the glaring and incontestable evidence presented before the court by the petitioners, and was, therefore, finding it difficult to challenge, hence his alleged resort to various antics during his cross-examination.

Mr. Buabeng Asamoah further asserted that Mr. Tsikata was frustrated because he was being given a tough time by the witness, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, making it very difficult for him (Mr. Tsikata) to live up to his pre-hearing hype by supporters of his own party.

The style of cross-examination by the NDC lead counsel has, for the past few weeks, dominated discussions in the media, including social network platforms, with various opinions being expressed on the way Mr. Tsikata had handled his past ten days of cross-examination of Dr. Bawumia.

Some supporters of the NPP, for instance, believe Mr. Tsikata is only wasting the precious time of the court, whilst others think he is adopting delay tactics just to drag the case.

Others have also opined that Mr. Tsikata had met his match in Dr. Bawumia and that his much-talked about legal empire was being crushed to the ground by the petitioners’ witness, though supporters of the ruling party shared contrary views.

However, the NPP legal spokesperson, who was addressing the Week Celebration of the Kumasi Polytechnic branch of the Tertiary Education Students Confederacy of the NPP, advised the supporters of the party not to insult Mr. Tsikata “because he is now a good friend to Dr. Bawumia, the vice president in-waiting.”

Mr. Buabeng Asamoah said he was of the conviction that Mr. Tsikata was rather helping the witness build his case and explain himself properly, as a result of the way and manner he was going about his cross-examination.

He contended that counsel doing cross-examination are supposed to be brief with their questions, and should only concentrate on getting the witness to commit himself, but in the case of Mr. Tsikata, he decides to run commentary instead of asking straightforward questions, adding, “this graciously gives Dr. Bawumia the opportunity to further explain matters to the understanding of everyone.”

“Tsatsu is talking too much. Lawyers in cross examination should not talk too much like that,” he noted, and said Mr. Tsikata had himself to blame for giving the opportunity to Dr. Bawumia to further enlighten his case, anytime he answers a question from him.

The leading NPP member further stressed that the rejection of the motion filed by Mr. Tsikata, seeking to cross examine other witnesses, and the subsequent statement by the Presiding Judge, Justice Atugubah, that it had ample evidence before it to determine the case should come as good news to all supporters of the NPP.

He said by indicating that it had enough evidence and that it did not need any additional details from the petitioners, the court was telling everyone that it understood clearly the matter before it and that it would not entertain any form of delay tactics.

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