Hannah N. Geterminah
NEC headquarters in Monrovia
The opposition Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) has accused the electoral body and the governing Coalition for Democratic Change of working in cahoots to alter the elections results in Nimba and Gbarpolu Counties in favor of the ruling party.
But the electoral body — the National Election Commission has dismissed the allegations as baseless and false.
The CPP yesterday alleged that the they have enough evidence to substantiate their claims, such as tally sheets that were manipulated at the tallying centers in favor of Rep. Jeremiah Koung of the Movement for Democracy and Reconciliation, who is supported by the CDC in the Nimba race.
According to the CPP, some of their evidence include the broken seals on ballot boxes and the swapping of another candidate’s vote, as well as a host of irregularities.
The vote swapping, the CPP alleged, is being conducted in Nimba County where their candidate Edith Gongloe-Weh’s votes have been swapped and given to Rep. Koung in Nimba County electoral district 9.
“NEC workers were also observed to have carelessly handled ballot papers, which questioned the integrity and credibility of the process in certain places,” the CPP release said.
They added, “the action of the ruling CDC and the government in Nimba and Gbarpolu proves that the CDC will do everything to ensure that women are not elected to the Liberian senate. They fought unsuccessfully in Grand Bassa to ensure that the only female (Sen. Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence) in the Senate was not reelected and are fighting to steal the elections from Edith Gongloe-Weh in Nimba as well.”
The CPP added that in Gbarpolu County, state securities are effectively blocking supporters of Independent Candidate Botoe Kanneh from entering Normor Datando Town where rerun election is expected to be held on Tuesday, December 15, 2020, to complete the senatorial election in that county, and also intimidating voters in a bid to deter them from voting for the candidate of their choice.”
Responding to the CPP, Henry Flomo, NEC communication Director, said the allegation leveled against the electoral body by the CPP is not true and is a diabolical lie.
“At NEC, we are so shocked about the CPP’s allegation, but the truth of the matter is, this election was conducted free and fair. NEC has no interest in any candidates but to announce the result just the way the people voted with no changes,” Flomo said.
He said, “If the CPP has a problem, let them challenge the results and stop accusing us falsely. The results we are announcing are exactly what is on the tally sheet, which they have in their posession.”
Flomo added that he cannot respond to the Normor Datondo Town issue from CPP, since the rerun election in that part of Gbarpolu County has not started yet.
The CPP congratulated the Liberians for a violence-free elections. “Despite the attacks by thugs from the ruling CDC on our candidate in Cape Mount, our people conducted themselves in such a manner that sends a clear message that we will preserve the peace rather than resort to violence.”
CPP has claimed that there is a voice recording circulating, believed to be the Superintendent of Gbarpolu County, mandating government employees in the county to vote for the CDC candidate.
Citing the case in Grand Kru County, CPP Secretariat alleged that CDC, in their desperation to win at any cost, is again in cahoots with the NEC to elevate, through electoral fraud, the candidate contesting on the CDC’s ticket who was ranked third, to a winning position at the expense of two other candidates in the lead.
“The CPP will stand toe-to-toe with the independent candidates and candidates from other parties in the opposition bloc to ensure that the actual winner of the race in Grand Kru is announced by the NEC.
In the Montserrado County District 9 by-election, scores of voters were disenfranchised, either by what the CPP describes as “the incompetency of the NEC or intentional transfer of voters in areas where our candidate was most popular,” said the CPP.
CPP said most of the voters who registered at the Jorkpen Town Market, one of many precincts in District 9, were told they could not vote because they had been transferred to Blamasi Town in District 17.
According to them, pre-marked ballots were discovered at other precincts in District 9 including the Don Bosco precinct on elections day, which was reported to the police and several observers documented the incident in their reports. As such, they are demanding a ‘rerun at those precincts.’
They called on the NEC not to tamper with the referendum’s result, adding that “counting in our situation rooms across the country showed that none of the propositions acquired the required two-thirds YES votes to be passed.”
CPP called on the government to respect the people and not tamper with their votes or intimidate them, adding that they will not accept any results that do not reflect the will of the people. “We will continue to protect the votes of the people and the integrity of these elections,” CPP said.
Source Daily Observer.