The Association of Liberian Journalists in the Americas (ALJA) says it supports the Supreme Court’s recent injunction which restrained the National Elections Commission (NEC) from conducting the November 7 run-off election between the ruling Unity Party (UP) and the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) following Liberty Party’s petition which alleged irregularities and fraud in the October 10 general and presidential elections.
The Supreme Court’s prohibition was issued on November 6, 2017.
ALJA said the Supreme Court’s prohibition on the run-off election until the electoral irregularities and frauds claims filed by the Liberty Party (LP) are urgently and expeditiously investigated and disposed of by the NEC, is plausible and sets a good precedence for compliance with the rule of Law in Liberia.
The Association in a press release issued last Thursday described the Supreme Court’s ruling as a pivotal step taken in Liberia’s quest for the dispensation of justice to all Liberians regardless of social, tribal, racial, and political connections.
ALJA maintained that the failure of the NEC to expeditiously probe the Liberty Party’s complaint before setting the November 7th date for the run-off election denied the Party its constitutional right to due process. The Association added that the action had the propensity of causing an unnecessary electoral chaos in Liberia.
Liberia is now at a critical juncture where it is endeavoring to transition political power from one democratically elected president to another, the Association said, emphasizing that at such a time, the need for every individual or group to be given the right to due process in the dispensation of justice cannot be overstated.
There can be no peace or stability in Liberia when aggrieved individuals and institutions are treated with indifference by people in authority, said ALJA, adding, “If the peace and stability which Liberia has enjoyed over the years are to be sustained, it is imperative that all residents of the country and organizations, including the NEC, adhere to the rule of law. Liberia cannot be a place of might but a country of law and order,” ALJA warned.
The Association said compliance with the rule of law lays the foundation for good governance, political stability, quietude, and national development. The Association stressed, “no country the world over thrives when the rule of law is sidestepped by its citizens and leaders on the basis of personal egos and greed.”
Meanwhile, ALJA has condemned in the strongest terms the November 5 attack on the home of Associate Justice, Sie-A-Nyene Youh in Monrovia. ALJA said the reported attack which was executed by some unknown individuals during the evening hours of November 5th is troubling.
The Association observed that the reported stoning of Associate Justice Youh’s home under the cover of darkness was a cowardly act which was meant to intimidate and cow her, Liberian judges, and lawyers in the performance of their legal and national duties. ALJA called on the Liberia National Police (LNP) to exert all efforts in bringing the culprits of such a heinous act to justice without delay.