Dr. Tipoteh: ‘Senate Lowered Itself’

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Dr. Togba-Nah Tipoteh has said that Tuesday’s decision by the Liberian Senate to endorse the December 16, 2014 timetable by the National Elections Commission (NEC) for the Special Senatorial Elections amounts to “lowering itself”.

According to Dr. Tipoteh, a twice defeated presidential candidate, NEC through a communication asked the Liberian Senate for approval of a date to hold the Special Senatorial Elections, because the electoral body holds the view that its request was the legal action to take.

The Senate, in the view of Dr. Tipoteh, began considering the request of NEC because it was of the opinion that NEC had taken the appropriate legal action.

Surprisingly, Dr. Tipoteh pointed out, NEC went ahead implementing its plan to hold elections without the Senate's approval, by announcing the beginning of electoral campaigning on Thursday, November 20, 2014.

More surprising, Dr. Tipoteh observed, is the approval of the request of NEC after that body had begun the implementation of its plan to hold the Senatorial Elections.

He insisted, in a text message to this newspaper yesterday, that NEC's action to proceed with its plan prior to receiving the requested approval of the Senate means that NEC considers the Senate's approval to be “unnecessary and irrelevant.”

Therefore, Dr. Tipoteh concluded that the Senate lowered itself by allowing NEC to proceed with the elections without the approval of the Senate, especially after NEC had publicly sought that body’s approval of its elections plan.

Meanwhile, some of the 12 Senators who are contenders for their second term, will be clearing their desks today during the 79th day sitting of the Senate, some, if not all, for the last time. They journey to their respective counties as campaigning kicks off today in earnest.

Grand Kru County Senator Cletus Segbe Wotorson, who served as Pro Tempore in the 52nd Senate, is calling it a day after serving in several governments for over 50 years.

Senator Frederick Doe Cherue of River Gee, who is one of the renowned lawyers of the country, and Isaac Nyenabo of Grand Gedeh County are also not standing for re-election. Nyenabo has been nominated by President Sirleaf to serve as Ambassador to the European Union and Brussels.

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