Elections Experts Smell Fraud in Pending December Polls

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Chairman Fromayan- We work within the legal framework to control the flow of small arms.jpg
James M. Fromayan

— Call for the referendum to be halted to avoid political crisis

By Joaquin M. Sendolo and William Q. Harmon

“An election is not an event but a process and, as such, an election can only be considered credible if the processes leading to the conduct of the polls are transparent. But regrettably, the preparations leading to the conduct of the pending Special Senatorial Election are not transparent,” an NGO of elections experts operating under the name, Center for Development and Elections Management (CEDEM), have said.

The experts, all of whom are Liberians, some of them former officials of the National Elections Commission (NEC), led by former NEC chairman James M. Fromayan, said they have observed to a greater extent that activities as they relate to the conduct of the pending Senatorial Election are symbolic devoid of any genuine effort to conduct the polls in a manner that would contribute to the consolidation of Liberia’s democratic experiment and thus enhance the chances for genuine peace and development.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, CEDEM noted that some of the procedures that are being fraudulently done include the recruitments of registration staffers such as Electoral Supervisors, Registrars, Data Entry Clerks — “all of which were and are being conducted in secrecy.”

“The facts are glaring.  Recruitment of registration staffers such as Electoral Supervisors, Registrars, Data Entry Clerks, etc. were conducted in secrecy with no announcement to the public as per the criteria or qualification required of the individuals who are hired by the Commission,” the statement noted.

“As was the case with their recruitment, so was the training of these individuals,” the CEDEM release stated. “It was a matter of secrecy detached from the Public domain. Civic education activities necessary for the creation of awareness for the current Voter Update Exercise are non-existing.  No banners, no billboards, no adequate jingles and songs in the media across the Country to create the necessary awareness that is needed for such a crucial Process,” it said.

The group also said the lack of seriousness that is being accorded the conduct of the pending referendum by the NEC evidenced by the absence of vigorous Civic education activities in a Country of  high illiteracy rate clearly indicates the incapability of the NEC to concomitantly conduct the Senatorial Election along with the Referendum on 8 December 2020.  “As a consequence, the NEC should abandon the plan to conduct the Pending Referendum to avoid a political crisis such as the situation in neighboring Guinea,” it said. 

CECEM also observes that there has been no launch of Civic education activity in a manner and form that would raise public awareness for the ongoing process—contributing to the lack of momentum of the entire preparatory process. “It is important to note, that the current Voter Update Process is crucial and as such, a necessary precondition for the conduct of the Pending Election,” the statement added.

A scene from the ongoing Voter Roll Update in Liberia

FRR Grossly Inadequate

 CEDEM also raised the issue of the current Final Registration Roll (FRR), which it says is grossly inadequate to meet the requirement of Free, Fair, and transparent Election. “The paramount reason is that there are thousands of voter’s Cards in the hands of individuals whose names are not on the FRR,” it said.

Though the situation could be managed with a degree of skill that could make possible the conduct of election on a limited scale as has been the case with the past By-Elections, but cannot be on a larger scale that involves the entire Country, the group said.

Finding a solution to this problem must be the primary objective of the current Voter Update Exercise, the group said this seems not to be the case. “Correction of this major inadequacy associated with the current Final Registration Roll (FRR) could be achieved by an Update Process using the time tested Stationary approach.”

 “The current Update Process is incapable of addressing the major challenges confronting the current FRR. As such, it is an exercise in futility that should be abandoned in the interest of Peace and democracy in Liberia,” CEDEM warned.

The National Elections Commission also on Tuesday, September 22, 2020 acknowledged that there were people carrying on double registration which it said it is criminal, but could not state what it would do to revert any foul play in casting ballots during the election as many people and groups have registered their concerns that the process is not credible.

Hiring of camera boys to carry out NEC’s functions 

Another problem associated with the preparatory process for the pending Election, CEDEM said, is the procurement of indispensable Update material such as cameras. It is no secret that the NEC embarked on the current update process with no cameras in Country—and in order to navigate its way around said problem, the Commission resulted to what the election experts group termed as an unprecedented act by hiring Camera boys from the Streets of Monrovia and around the Country with no regard to their partisan status.

“This act enables these photographers to possess crucial data such as the negatives of the photographs that makes the duplication of more photos possible.” 

This singular act, the group added, sufficiently undermines the ongoing process and renders its credibility highly questionable.  “It is a glaring recipe for chaos evidenced by the increasing acts of violence in many parts of the Country associated with the Update Process. This is a sad and troubling development obtaining in Liberia because the fundamentals of the relative peace prevailing in our Country is the entrenchment of confidence in the electoral process.”

CEDEM frowns on new registration of voters

The experts noted that the current Voter Update Process should have been intended for the updating of existing Electoral Roll and not a new registration.

“It is alarming to see the multitudes that are claiming to be individuals who have turned 18 and above since the last Voter registration in 2017, along with those who are also claiming to have changed residence from where they previously resided.”

The NEC had earlier stated that the update process was meant for three categories of people: First time voters; those who lost their voter cards and people who changed their areas of residence. 

CEDEM said the NEC is rather conducting what appears to be new registration of voters under the guise of an Update exercise because there is an absence of a mechanism to determine whether an individual is already a registered voter or not.  “The abandonment by the NEC of the Stationary Registration Process that could certainly make possible a verified process has given rise to the lack of credibility associated with the current update exercise.”

The NEC could not admit whether or not it sees it wrongful to open another round of voter registration, but said the update process is going according to schedule under challenge of over crowdedness. 

CEDEM also noted that truck and bus loads of individuals, many of whom are below the age of 18, claiming to belong to either of the two categories indicated are being transported by Political Actors in a manner that has rendered our Electoral process laughable.

The NEC has acknowledged receiving messages about voter trucking and expressed that it is “Deeply concerned about reports of “trucking”. We wish to reiterate that trucking is prohibited under Chapter 10.1(a) of the New Elections Law and is punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment of up to six months.”

“It is alarming to note the open influence of money in the Update Process. Social Media has a video showing a Montserrado County Senatorial Aspirant dishing out money to prospective Voters. This amounts to a negative omen for the Electoral Process, because it further undermines the credibility of the Update Exercise.”

“These disturbing activities are being made possible by the failure of the NEC to execute the current Update Exercise using a verification process.  A verification process entails the uploading of data at every precinct to ensure that a claim by any individual to the effect that he or she was not registered during the last registration would be verified prior to the inclusion of said individual on the Roll.

16 COMMENTS

  1. What time did Edwin Fromoyan become an election expert in Liberia when he rigged several elections for his benefactor Ellen Johnson Sirleaf?
    After 12 years of looting, does Fromoyan believe they have another opportunity to reinvent socialists agenda?

    • Mr. Snow White, is Mr. Fromayan and his group’s expertise all that caught your attention from the litany of missteps the NEC is making in this election process? How about dealing with the pertinent issues this group raised with regards to the integrity of the forthcoming election and for the sake of maintaining peace in the country following the election, rather than burrying our heads in the sand only to pull them out later with fire on our backs? The message my friend, not the messenger.

      And if I may remind you, Mr. Fromayan conducted few by-elections as well as national (presidential) election during his chairmanship without any major fracas or election violence. It might surprise you to know the current NEC headquarters is even named in honor of the man for that exemplary leadership. A very rare fete for a former chair of an electoral body in Africa. Sadly our politics on the continent especially in Liberia, is often driven by tribalism as in provincialism. Very shackling!

      • Peter Gboyo, you must be running mad to make statement as “And if I may remind you, Mr. Fromayan conducted few by-elections as well as national (presidential) election during his chairmanship without any major fracas or election violence.“

        If this rubbish from you made any sense or had any truth in it, THEN WHY James Fromoyan had to announce one result while the NEC had a different result?

        If you are not lying about incompetent and dishonest Fromoyan conducting election “without any major fracas or election violence“, THEN WHY was James Fromoyan the thief and stooge of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf smuggled out of Liberia to Ghana amid such a major electoral violence which claimed the lives of so many voters?

      • Did you States that Fromoyan conducted elections without a major electoral violence?
        What led to the November 7th 2011 violence that took lives of Liberians. Let’s others speaks and not Fromoyan “Always Drunk”

  2. Daily Observer, you prove your unseriousness and not to be be taken seriously when you make these kinds of publications about a James Fromoyan A NOTORIOUS THIEF when a comes to election. This THIEF James fromoyan is too incompetent to be an expert in anything as an election.

  3. Focus on the issues raised and forget personalities. Are these irregularities not valid issues that could be the recipe for chaos in Liberia? It is the shared responsibility of every Liberian to protect the peace we currently enjoyed. The cleanup exercise of the FRR is fraudulent and lacks the credibility that will lead to a free, fair and transparent elections. This process must be halted now! We shouldn’t allow this fraud to occur in full view of the public. Liberia is all we have, we must prevent fraud that could threaten our peace.

    • James Fromoyan or whoever is telling us to “Focus on the issues raised and forget personalities,“, you better bear in mind that we are not stupid as you stooges and zombies. That silly mentality of . “Focusing on the issues raised and forgetting about personalities“ is what you thieves have depended on over the years, and exploited to achieve your selfish desires and appetites.

      There you were the other day been the most notorious fraud in the world during an election in which lives were lost as a result of your fraudulent character and mentality. And today you want to tell us about you are smelling fraud. People like you only need to be in prison for life.

  4. LOOK AT THE PERSON TALKING ABOUT FRAUD, JAMES IS THAT YOU? THE MAN WHO IN 2011 TOOK CDC RESULTS GAVE IT UNITY PARTY, IS THIS THE MAN TALKNG ABOUT FRAUD, GOD GET PATIENCE YAA. JAMES YOU NEED TO CLOSE YOU MOUTH AND ALLOW SOMEONE ELSE TO SPEAK BECAUSE YOU DO NOT HAVE THE MORAL CHARACTER TO SPEAK ON ELECTION ISSUES WHEN IT COMES TO FRAUD DUE TO YOUR PREVIOUS ROLE AS FORMER CHAIRMAN OF THE ELECTION COMMISSION. WHAT A WORLD WE LIVE IN, JAMES, NO MEHN!!!

    • PETER Gboyo, , James Fromoyan is a fraud! He conducted a fraudulent election in 2011 in favor of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf!

      Ellen Johnson Sirleaf promoted each and every one of her protégés such as Fromoyan internationally!

  5. Talk about pot calling the kettle black, Fromoyan frowns on updates, and smells “fraud”. Granted that the broken process at NEC must be fixed for a credible senatorial race, such rotten insinuation stinks badly. As for Dempster Yallah alias Peter Gboyo blowing horn of kinsman Fromoyan for a UP led by Lofan Joseph Boakai, while claiming that Liberian politics is driven by “tribalism”, you be the judge. Or should I mention the disingenuousness of Gboyo Yallah using as proof of “exemplary leadership” the fact that a UP government named NEC’s Headquarters after Fromoyan. It is a telling bribe, for heaven’s sake!

  6. Wow! Is this election about James Flomoyan or Liberia as a country? Is Mr. Flomoyan the one truck loading people to register in the coming elections? Why don’t we stayed on the issues rather personal attacks and insults on others views that won’t change anything to the situation. Others concern civil groups has also reiterated excatly what Mr. Flomoyan is saying, despite they have never conducted elections in Liberia and can’t you see the danger this is heading to? This is not about James Flomoyan to start with and Mr. Flomoyan is entitle to his views about crisis in Liberia just like every other Liberian. If you don’t accord with Jimmy views, that’s just fine but don’t rain insults and name calling when infact, what he is saying absolutely correct.

    Because Mr. James Flomoyan is corrupt in your opinion, so liberians should allow the fraudulent process presently going on, which NEC has acknowledged to? Why don’t we fixed the problems that will yield to violence now, rather than castigating James Flomoyan that is irrelevant to the situation presently facing NEC and Liberia. STOP the personal attacks and stayed focus on the issues to bring lasting solutions.

  7. This is a politically driven organization that might have been paid by some Weah’s political foe to carry such insignificant message. Why the Daily Observers should waste their valuable times in order to negatively sway public attention by bringing such nonsensical story? Or may be James Fromoyan is behind the public scene and finding means to be public eye catching again.

    Why the observers should bestowed such credible and tactical name” Election expertise” on such a novice person that knows nothing about electionery process. But thank God for Amb. George Weah that deemed it appropriate to maintain the peace we all are enjoying today by swollowing the bitter pill for the sake of his country’s, or else this stupid and idiotic “election Expertise” as branded could be the cause in 2011 for this country to disintegrate into chaotic situation. James Fromoyan and his so called group have no character to bring forth to the Liberian people when it come to having credible election. Let the group go find something better to do to improve their lives and that of their families and forget about such skimming tactics that would do them nothing.

    May be he is forgetting when he intentionally went ahead and ignored the original tallies from the database in 2011 and fraudulently pronounced the incorrect numbered which brought stampedes in this country that subsequently lead to the lost of lives.If Fromoyan could have actual faculty of reasoning, he could not have being on the forefront in such scenario, rather,he should be remorseful for his dubious and fraudulent acts that he brough upon this country. He had conducted both by and presidential elections during his tenured as NEC chaired that were characterized by marred fraud that brought shamed and disgrace to our country.

    This election will be free and fair under the able leadership of Mrs. Lansannah; it will not be volatile as presumed by some insignificant being around here as it happened in the Dillon’s scenario. Whosoever that win will be pronounced under the watchful eyes of the international community. If anyone’s is foreseeing defeat and finding way to discredit the credibility of NEC, such cheap tactics will not save them from seeing their defeat.

  8. John H.T.Stewart Jr the main Editor or Editor in Chief of Daily Observer. is a bosom friend of James Fromoyan. Their choice of presidential candidate was old, ugly, incompetent, inept, and corrupt Boakai.

    While John H.T.Stewart Jr. the main editor of Daily Observer have long parted ways with Ellen because she refused to give him government job and she refused to accept their proposal that she used her incumbent power to reverse the choice of the electorates, James Fromoyan and Dempster Yallah now want this useless NGO to live on.

    James Fromoyan is one of those who believe they cannot make it in the private sector. So they must find any way to have some operations with the public sector. Dempster Yallah who is here using the fake name of Peter Gboyo, and James Fromoyan together lived in the same house in Lakpasee Sinkor Airfield in the 80s.

    This is why you see Dempster Yallah feigning as a Peter Gboyo trying his best IN FUTILITY to lie for James Fromoyan the most notorious fraud ever in Liberia and Africa.

    These supporters of presidential election losers have sensed that for now and the future,the Coalition of Democratic Change is the only political grouping the electorates throughout the country have decided to keep in power, since it is now more clearer that Benoni Urey, Joseph Boakai, Alex Cummings, etc. or their CPP IS BAD NEWS.

    So, these supporters of losers, amid the fact we already have more legitimate and highly credible election NGOS, job seeking James Fromoyan and his cohorts have chosen to set up this good for nothing and totally irrelevant shit they call NGO for election to create confusion. But of course, the NEC, The international community, the Diplomatic Community, and the Liberian people have long seen through their sinister designs bound to drown them into further frustration as they are bulldozed into oblivion.

  9. Let James Fromoyan find place to sleep
    He was at Joe Bokia rally and supported a party
    He should have been clear of politics
    He is a disgrace to Liberia

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