ECOWAS Commits To Free, Fair & Credible Elections in Liberia

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As Liberians prepare to exercise their democratic franchise in the October 10, 2023, general and presidential elections, the Speaker of the parliament of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Sidie Tunis as well as the head of the ECOWAS Commission, Omar Touray have pledged the regional bodies support to the consolidation of Liberia’s democracy through a free, fair, and credible elections.

The main goal of ECOWAS is to promote peace, and economic cooperation among member states to raise living standards and promote economic development, against this backdrop, the organization, headed by high-profile African leaders, have always committed themselves to a free, and fair electoral process void of violence and manipulation.

The ECOWAS delegates made their commitment at a program marking the opening of the “Delocalized Meeting” of ECOWAS parliament joint committees on Political Affairs, Peace, Security and African Peer Review Mechanism, Judicial Affairs, Human Rights, Social Affairs, Gender and Women Empowerment in Monrovia.

Speaker Tunis said as the people of Liberia prepare to hold Presidential and Legislative Elections in October, electrics are set and ready to demonstrate their democratic rights as he assured the ECOWAS Parliament’s fullest commitment and support to the process.

Last month, a group of high-profile ECOWAS delegates was sent to Liberia to assess the country’s state of preparedness for the October 10, 2023, General Elections. The ECOWAS delegation was led by Professor AttahirusJega, former Chairman of the Independent Nigeria Electoral Commission (INEC) of Nigeria for ECOWAS, and Ambassador CalixteMbari, head of Democracy, Elections and Constitutionalism of the African Union Commission.

He added: “I am aware that an ECOWAS pre-election mission is currently in Liberia to assess the Country’s preparedness for the upcoming General Elections.”

Speaker Tunis used the occasion to extol the effort of the ECOWAS Commission and express the parliament’s support to Liberia’s next democratic turnover in the not-too-distant future.

 

Touray, who was represented at the event by Mrs. Josephine Nkurumah, Permanent Representative of the ECOWAS Commission to Liberia lauded the country on the 20th anniversary of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) signed in Accra, Ghana on August 18, 2003.

He commended the country for advancing democratic rule and sticking to the CPA agreement signed between the Government of Liberia, the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD), the Movement for Democracy in Liberia (MODEL) and political parties which ended the brutal Liberian civil war.

He assures the Liberian populace of ECOWAS Commission’s commitment to working with Liberia as it consolidates its peace journey and democratic tendency comes October 10, 2023.

He further expressed his commitment to National and International Partners that Liberia’s General Elections on October 10, 2023, will be a credible, peaceful, fair, and transparent one.

At the same time, the President of the Commission expressed his gratitude to the Government and people of Liberia on the occasion of the nation’s 176th Independence Anniversary on July 26.

Making remarks at the occasion, Liberia’s Vice President, Jewel Howard-Taylor said Liberia is ready to preserve its democracy as its citizens go to the elections in approximately 76 days.

Vice President Taylor also pledged the Government of Liberia commitment to delivering a free, fair, transparent, and violence-free elections.

Source: LINA

Let Civility Foster Our National Campaign

ONE OF THE crucial moments of political contestation in any electioneering period is the formal declaration by the National Elections Commission of a nationwide campaign. This declaration gives qualified contesting parties and candidates to rally support from their constituents ahead of the conduct of elections.

THE LONG-AWAITED day for the NEC to formally declare national campaign open in Liberia for the October 10, 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections is Saturday, August 5, 2023.

WE, LIKE OTHER Liberians, long to see the calibrations each party or candidate tends to display that would certainly determine who wins a particular seat, be it at the presidency or legislature.

IN NO UNCERTAIN terms, we anticipate real fireworks in different forms and manners from opposing parties and candidates showcasing why they should be elected at the polls in October this year. 

 HOWEVER, WHY CAMPAIGN brings forth tensions, agitations, criticisms, innuendoes and the likes associated with election campaign, we call on all parties and candidates to know that being opponents in political contestation does not mean that you are enemies.  

IT IS OUR fervent hope and prayer that political maturity will lead everyone into demonstrating oneness of purpose during the national campaign period that is expected to last for approximately two months  in order for eligible Liberians to make a definite decision on October 10 at the polls.

IN CLOSING, LET civility foster our national campaign period  to show to the outside world that Liberians can nurture democracy to sustain peace, stability, social justice, security, development and progress for a better nation building.

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