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General News of Wednesday, 24 June 2020


Supreme Court dismisses IMANI et al application in NDC vrs EC case

File photo: Supreme Court File photo: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has thrown out an application filed by four civil society organisations to be friends of the suit filed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) against the Electoral Commission, Ghana (EC) and the Attorney General.

The CSOs – IMANI Africa, Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA), Institute for Liberty and Policy Innovation and Conservative Policy Research Center – had served notice to volunteer relevant information to the court in what is often referred to as amicus brief in law.

But the EC on Tuesday, June 23 prayed the Court to dismiss the application by the CSOs, arguing the public utterances of the CSOs on the matter is a clear indication that “they are not disinterested in the outcome of the case”, and can thus not file an amicus brief.

On Wednesday, the Court unanimously threw out the application, saying it has no place in law.

“The need for an amicus brief is not supported by law,” President of the panel, Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah, who is also the Chief Justice, said.

“We have therefore dismissed the application for the CSOs on the amicus brief.”

The amicus brief, according to the EC, was sought by the CSOs “to seek leave of the court to point to the court some decision, whether reported or unreported or some point of law which appeared not to have been canvassed by the litigating parties or to bring for the benefit of the court some special expertise relating to the matter before it”.

By this decision, the Court can decide on the date on which to give judgement on the substantive case.

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