AHEAD OF 2023 PRESIDENTIAL AND LEGISLATIVE ELECTIONS
Monrovia – In order to implement the biometric voter registration system for the presidential and legislative elections in Liberia scheduled for October 10, 2023, the National Elections Commission has requested administrative and technical assistance from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). The NEC Chairperson, Madam Davidetta Browne Lansanah, appealed to ECOWAS to provide assistance because this is the first time Liberia will conduct elections using biometric voter registration. Assistance in this regard will help to improve data management and foster public trust in the BVR procedure, the NEC Chairperson added.
Madam Lansanah made the appeal when she welcomed the two-man fact-finding mission from ECOWAS, who are in the country to ascertain the status of the Biometric Voter Registration (BVR), and preparations for the 2023 General Elections in the country. Madam Lansanah said NEC thought it wise and appropriate to call on the ECOWAS because the West African regional block has always played a lead, and critical role in Liberia’s peace process particularly over the last two decades.
“You will recall in 2017, ECOWAS technical team was deployed to the commission and worked with our technicians to clean the voter roll thus ensuring the credibility of the final registration roll prior to the conduct of those elections. The West African regional organization has given immeasurably support to democratic governance through sustained engagement with all actors and stakeholders in Liberia including NEC. NEC extends appreciation to the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia and the ECOWAS Electoral Division for staying the course with the electoral body. We welcome your intervention to ensure a resounding success of the biometric voter registration in Liberia.”
Ambassador Josephine Nkrumah, the Resident Representative of ECOWAS in Liberia, stated that the mission was the first of several that would be sent there to gather data in advance of the elections in 2023. She noted the delegation will listen to comments and suggestions from stakeholders on the 2023 General Elections and study how ECOWAS can assist NEC.
According to her, the ECOWAS mission has had insightful engagements with relevant stakeholders to the elections, including political parties. She said ECOWAS is assessing what support it can provide during the BVR exercise and general elections.
Ambassador Nkrumah noted that if all stakeholders, including the media, can work together for the successful conduct of the BVR exercise and general elections, it would demonstrate to the rest of the world that Liberia’s democracy is maturely growing, even in the absence of United Nations Mission in Liberia. She admonished the media to be fair in reportage because it must assist NEC in providing adequate and massive civic and voter education.
The ECOWAS delegation includes Francis Oke, head of Elections Assistance of ECOWAS and head of delegation, and Ebenezer Asiedu, Principal Officer of the Directorate of Political Affairs.
Reported by: Augustine Octavius
USAID Mission Director; 2023 Elections Critical Test for Liberia’s Democracy
Lonestar CellMTN Launches Financial Services Partnership With Doxx bet
Labour Ministry Settles Rice Price Dispute Between Firestone Rubber Plantation Company and Workers