By J K K Peah
MONROVIA- An observer group that observed Liberia’s Voter Registration process which ended last Tuesday, has written the National Election Commission of Liberia a 12 points Concern and recommendation on foreign nationals meddling into that West African nation’s October election running as candidates under the disguise of being Liberians and political parties are fielding them as Stan_
In a three page “Letter of Concern” to the Chairman of the Commission, the Liberia-America Friendship Organization says ” we appreciate the cooperation it we received from the National Election Commission as they observed the Voter Registration and the pivotal role their observers played as they were vigilant and helpful in working along with the Commission’s poll officials to spot irregularities and the appropriate actions taken to mitigate the attempted irregularities and infractions”.
The letter further says, the “National Election Commission is one of three independent Commissions promulgated by the constitution but the only institution with the three functions of legislating, adjudicating and enforcement and cognizant of the Commission’s powers as indicated above, the milestone of the October elections and what is at stake for the country posterity, we are constraint to bring to your and the Commission attention several heartbreaking development and issues circumventing the electoral sphere in Liberia as the country journeys to election on October 10th which have the poison to endanger the conduct of the election and threaten the peace and security of the country”.
LIAFO’s letter to Chairman Korkoya admonishes the Commission, noting that “among the laundry list of these disturbing and creeping poisons engulfing the electoral landscape are political parties and aspiring candidates who are knowingly and in sheered disregard for the constitution, election and immigration laws as well as the National Code of Conduct of Liberia”.
“We wish to alert the Commission of specific blatant infractions currently being perpetrated by political parties and aspirants which if not decisively addressed by the Commission, has potential of plunging this election into chaos and they include”, the letter continues among other things things, the following:
Political parties are knowingly fielding foreign nationals under the disguise of Liberian citizen as their standard Bearers
- That foreign nationals are knowingly meddling in the election, aspiring to run for offices in October
- That political parties and aspirants in breach of the National Code of Conduct are still involve in unofficial campaign activities having been elected and chosen as Standard Bearer and Vice Standard Bearers respectively.
- That some aspirants joined a foreign military which automatically purged their Liberian citizenship
- That the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), Alternative National Congress (ANC), Liberty Party and Movement for Economic Empowerment (MOVEE) are fielding foreign nationals as Standard Bearers and Vice Standard Bearers and Standard Bearers who are in glaring violation of the National Code of Conduct but ignoring it while publicly purporting the Code of Conduct does not affect them.
The LIAFO’S concern and recommendation also names some political parties who are fielding foreign nationals as their Standard Bearers under the disguise of they being Liberians including the Alternative National Congress, Coalition for Democratic Change and the Liberty Party and Movement for Economic Empowerment who are fielding Standard Bearers and Vice Standard Bearer respectively who are in glaring violation of the “Code of Conduct” but making public pronouncement that the “Code of Conduct’ does not apply to them, a recipe for chaos if they chose to ignore the law and make themselves masters of their own destiny there by putting themselves above Liberia and the the country beneath them in blatant disregard for the “rule of law”.
LIAFO letter to Chairman Korkoyah concluded by making six point recommendation including :
- That all candidates submit Police Clearance along with their official application to contest a post in the election.
- That all candidates disclose all the places they live for the past 10 years.
- That all candidates who once lived abroad Police Report from the countries or states of the countries they lived
- That all candidates who once lived abroad disclose and submit the immigration status they lived under while living in foreign countries.
- That the Commission puts in place a robust mechanism to vet candidates and verify the information they provide the Commission while paralleling it with the guidelines as set forth to correlate its veracity.
- That all candidates sign “Consent Waiver” for the Commission to verify the information they are submitting.
The LIAFO is a non for profit organization that fosters US-Liberia relations and historical friendly ties founded Liberia in 1999 and the United States in 2001 .
Observing and monitoring elections in Liberia and the United States is one of the organization’s core areas on concentration and has observed two elections in Liberia beginning with the 1999 Grand Bassa County By election and the Montserrado County 2009 By election.
LIAFO is observing Liberia’s October election and intends to deploy observers to all 4,701 centers and 2,080 precincts and every observer assigned a camera phone submit to LIAFO election headquarters in Monrovia real-time reporting of results as from polling centers accompanied by digital copy of certified result from each polling centers to ensure the election is transparent and dis-incentivize any wolf cry of election fraud as our independent data will be at political parties, candidates and the public disposal to corroborate the result as would be announced by the National Election Commission.