Ayikoi Otoo Chides Tsatsu Over Late Filing

Joseph-Ayikoi-OtooA Former Attorney-General and Minister of Justices, Ayikoi Otoo, is unimpressed with the explanation Tsatsu Tsikata, counsel of the third Respondent, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Presidential Election Petition, gave for his late filing of the party’s address.

He said “in this era of technology, it was entirely possible for Tsikata to take a quick peep through the Petitioners address which was filed and served on them, before filing his.”

Tsatsu Tsikata flouted the court’s order to file his address for the third Respondent on July 30, 2013 deadline.
He, however, filed the address a day after all the parties involved in the case had filed theirs.

Mr. Tsikata informed the Justices hearing the case that “mechanical challenges” prevented them from meeting the deadline and could not file simultaneously as the other parties did.

According to him, they had to bind the addresses before submitting them and that caused the delay. Counsel for the Petitioners, Philip Addison objected to the late filing and told the court that the face of the counsel for the third Respondent showed a man who had had no sleep throughout the night, since he had read through the Petitioners address to improve upon theirs.

He argued that the proper thing counsel for the third Respondent ought to have done after he realised he was unable to meet the deadline was to seek written application from the court and not to come with an oral application, after he had flouted the court’s orders.

Mr. Addison accused Mr. Tsikata of employing “communist inferior tactics” in a case that is so crucial to the country’s democracy.
The judges reprimanded Tsikata for his late filing, but they, nonetheless, accepted his address because they did not want to “visit the sins of the lawyer” on the client.

Mr. Otoo found it curious how Mr. Tsikata, for two weeks, purportedly  had challenges binding his address but somehow was able to finish the binding 24 hours after the Petitioners filed their address.

According to him, he checked from the Registry and he was told that the Petitioners’ address was served on the respondents the very day it was filed, which meant that Mr. .Tsikata may have had an idea as to what was contained in the Petitioners address.

“In this technological era”, Mr. Otoo noted, “it was entirely possible for the third Respondent to cut and paste portions of the Petitioners address to improve the respondents own address own address”.

But Abraham Amaliba, a member of the NDC legal team vehemently objected to that assertion and pointed out that Mr. Otoo’s assertions would have been true, somewhat, if it was to be another lawyer but not when Mr. Tsikata is the man at the centre of the controversy.

He said Tsikata’s “credibility”, “quality” and “competence” surpasses one who would peep into the opponent’s address before filing his.
Mr. Amaliba reiterated that Mr Tsikata had not seen the Petitioners’ address before filing his.

Whilst agreeing completely with the view that court orders must be respected, he was quick to add that nobody must break his back or neck before meeting a court order. — Source:myjoyonline

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