30 More Registration Centers Proposed

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Amid public outcry about insufficient Voter Registration Centers across the country, the Committee on Elections and Inauguration of the House of Representatives has proposed that the National Elections Committee (NEC) create an additional 30 Voter Registration Centers.

“That in view of their numerous complaints from citizens across the country over the lack of adequate access to registration centers within their respective clans, townships and communities which could dis-enfranchise them from participating in the electoral process, the NEC must be mandated to create at least thirty (30) additional precincts across the country,” the House Elections and Inauguration Committee said in its report.

It added that “the creation of such additional precincts or registration centers be done on the basis of population and distances, as shall be recommended by the magistrate within the various counties.”

The suggestion for additional 30 registration centers was contained in a report to the House Plenary, which was read yesterday during the 8th day sitting of the House of Representatives.

The House Elections Committee is chaired by Grand Bassa County District # 3 Representative Gabriel B. Smith, co-chaired by Bong County District # 1 Representative Tokpah Mulbah. Members include Reps. Gabriel Nyenka, Mambu Sonii, Richard M. Tingba, Prince Moye and Josephine Francis.

The committee urged members of the House Plenary to remain professional and responsible when conducting party activities and encourage respective institutions to live within the confines of the law in order to ensure peaceful, transparent, free, and fair elections.

Meanwhile, the House leadership is reviewing whether 30 additional voter registration centers should be created by the National Elections Commission (NEC).

Rep. Smith’s committee has further informed members of the House of Representatives that the NEC has warned against trucking of voters and pre-election campaigning.

“Trucking of voters is moving voters from one point to another for the interest of a specific candidate. It is also unlawful and unnecessary to influence decision to a place of no interest,” the report said.

“There are few exceptional cases that could be allowed, such as students/individuals who may have changed their residences for school or place of work,” the committee said.

On nominating 30 percent of each gender, the committee cited the Election Law, which says: “Political parties must endeavor to ensure the participation of 30 percent of each gender.”

On the issue of electoral offenses, the NEC chairman points out that “pre-campaigning is one of the major electoral offenses” and warned that “candidates caught in the act will face the full weight of the law.”

The NEC also mentioned that “candidates with pictures in the streets are to be removed because such would lead to their disqualification.”

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