Court today took a dramtic turn after the witness Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, accussed counsel for National Democratic Congress (NDC) Tsatsu Tsikata of running away from the truth – his truth as found in his analysis- and hiding behind exhibits.
Tsikata has tried to prove with several pink sheets that exhibits used by Bawumia in his evidence was ripe with “dishonest” and “misleading” claims.
Counsel showed him pink sheet exhibits which has been mislabeled and put in different categories of irregularity.
He cited the pink sheet exhibit for Methodist Primary at Huniso and asked the witness to locate the counterpart copy. Bawumia located it but with a different exhibit number.
In all these pink sheets, Dr.Bawumia has admitted that they are “mislabeling” errors but insisted with his trademark line that “it was used once in his analysis”.
He again showed him repetition of the exhibit numbers in the counterpart copies provided by the petitioners and asked Bawumia to confirm it. Witness confirmed the repetition but again attributed this to "mislabeling".
Examination of exhibit number 005998 then threw up the drama.
“There is an exhibit attached to affidavit with a certain polling station now you are giving a different polling station to that exhibit already in evidence”, Tsatsu questioned.
He added “it is not true when you try to suggest that an exhibit with that number has been provided to this court. This an example of your dishonesty to the court”
Bawumia explained by admitting that “there was a mislabeling of two polling stations Catholic JSS Prestea and funeral grounds Ankaba for which the same serial number was used”.
“It is an error”, he said. His remedial suggestion was that “we can relabel this properly”.
He then proceeded to passionately address Tsatsu’s accusation of dishonesty.
“If you want to be honest with the court let us put down my analysis. If you are not afraid of the truth, show me one repeated polling stations in my analysis. If you are afraid of the truth then of course you would hide behind these exhibit numbers”.
His latest response drew the attention of Presiding Judge Atuguba.
“This is not a free fight” and do not trade "Bukom blows”, he warned Bawumia. “Limit yourself to the extent of the question," he advised.
Tsatsu insisted that the issue should not be "treated lightly". He asserted he was “not afraid of the truth” but “bothered” about his propensity to be dishonest. He said Bawumia was avoiding his questions.
Counsel for the Petitioners, Philip Addison waded into the controversy, mocking Tsikata that he got the answer he asked for. According to him, it was he, Tsikata who questioned the integrity and honesty of the witness and the witness responded in like manner.
Justice Atuguba then intervened and said that Bawumia ought to understand that he could not "crossfire", he [Tsatsu] was not him the witness box.
"In the witness box your credibility is at stake" not opposing counsel, Atuguba intoned.