MONROVIA…………..The National Elections Commission (NEC) today issued the Writs of Elections to the 19 Election Magistrates for the conduct of the 2020 Special Senatorial Election (SSE) and the Constitutional Referendum on December 8, 2020.
The program marking the issuance of the writs of elections is the single most important ceremony that legally mandates the election Magistrates to conduct elections in their various Counties or Jurisdictions. The activity is backed by Section 1.2 (g) of the New Elections Law, which defines “Special Elections” as elections held to fill the vacancies of fifty percent in the membership of the Senate.
Giving the mandate to the Clerk of Writs of NEC, madam Antoinette Johnson, the NEC Chairperson said “pursuant to “Joint Resolution” #003/2020, adopted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 54th Legislature of the Republic of Liberia and approved by the President of the Republic, December 8, 2020 has been set as the date for the conduct of the said Special Senatorial Elections”.
Madam Davidetta Browne Lansanah also, she said “pursuant to “Joint Resolution” Leg-002/2019 adopted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 54th Legislature; approved by the President of the Republic; printed into handbills on October 4, 2019; and published in the Official Gazette on October 8, 2019 -- a Constitutional Referendum seeking to amend Articles 28, 45, 47, 48, 49, 50, and 83(a & c) -- styled in three ballot measures as Proposition 1; Proposition 2; and Proposition 3, shall also be placed before the Electors on December 8, 2020, which is the same date of the Special Senatorial Elections”.
Therefore, the Chairperson said, “I do hereby command you to issue Elections Writs to each of the 19 Elections Magistrates of the Republic of Liberia to conduct in their respective Counties on the 8th day of December, A.D. 2020 from the hour of 8:O’clock Ante Meridian to 6:O’clock Post Meridian, the herein mentioned 2020 Special Senatorial Elections”.
Madam Lansanah then said “I command you to insert in the said Writs to each of the 19 Elections Magistrates to conduct in their respective Counties on the self-same day (8th day of December, A.D. 2020) from the hour of 8:O’clock Ante Meridian to 6:O’clock Post Meridian, the herein mentioned Constitutional Referendum styled as Proposition 1; Proposition 2; and Proposition 3”.
Speaking further, the NEC Chairperson also directed the Clerk “that the last day for nomination of Candidates by duly registered Political Parties, Alliances, Coalitions and Independent Candidates shall be the 21th Day of September, A.D. 2020 at 5:O’clock Post Meridian”.
Immediately after, the Clerk of Writs Johnson read out the Writs and issued them to each of the 19 Election Magistrates of the 15 Counties of Liberia.
She said “you are hereby further commanded to certify to me by endorsement upon the said Writ, at the close of the counting of votes as to the form and manner in which you conducted the said Special Senatorial Elections and Referendum and the results thereof”.
Speaking on behalf of his colleagues, Grand Cape Mount County Senior Magistrate, David Armah said they remain steadfast in conducting the SSE and Constitutional Referendum, free, fair, and transparent as they have done with previous elections.
He said they remain committed to working in the interest of Liberia.
Making special remarks, UNDP Country Rep reassured the Commission of the UNDP’s continued assistants to the Electoral Body. Dr. Pa Lamin Beyai said UNDP, said with funding from the European Union, Irish Aid, governments of Sweden and Canada will remain engaged with the Board of Commissioners and the entire Commission during the conduct of SSE and Referendum.