Korkoya: ‘Frauds, Irregularities Claims Politically Motivated’

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Cllr Korkoyah: “In keeping with Section 1 of said Resolution, the Senate and the House of Representatives resolved that the by-election be conducted no later than July 31, 2018.”

Amid growing concerns of alleged irregularities and frauds emanating from the October 10 polls, the Chairman of the National Elections Commission (NEC), Cllr. Jerome George Korkoya, has termed the allegations as “politically motivated.”

Addressing journalists at the Commission’s regular elections update press conference in Monrovia yesterday, Korkoya said the NEC should in no way be blamed for the delay in the conduct of the runoff election because some political parties and actors are responsible for the delay.

“One thing they all should know by now is that the NEC is not a political party situated to be counter-reacting all of the time to allegations as they may want us to do. We are not delaying the process, neither are we failing to dispose of pieces of evidence depicting frauds that we may have gotten from the field if any by the way,” he said.

“We have repeatedly informed the public that the October 10 representative and presidential elections were faced with some irregularities but let our message not be construed as saying that there were frauds, particularly intended to favor a candidate in the process,” he noted.

Korkorya’s reaction came following complaints filed by the Liberty Party, (LP), and All Liberian Party (ALP) and some individual candidates alleging that there were gross irregularities, frauds, and abuse of the constitution on October 10.

“Hearing into the Liberty Party’s case was ongoing but out of impatience they decided to run to the Supreme Court and seek a writ of prohibition ordering a stay order on the runoff until an investigation into their case was completed,” he said. “The NEC, as provided for by law has 30 days to hear complaints and if an aggrieved party feels any discontent, he or she or it can appeal to the NEC Board of Commissioners and if ruling from said matter is also not welcomed by any party, an appeal can be taken to the Supreme Court.”

“The Supreme Court has seven days to handle appeals from this Commission and renders its opinion,” he said.

He noted that the resolution of election disputes is of high priority to the Commission and as such no one should think that it is careless about looking into grievances from any camp or an individual.

Korkoya admonished political parties to be responsible and verify their allegations before bringing them to the public.

“Political technicalities from political parties and their lawyers are causing the delay, not the NEC,” he noted.

Concerning Unity Party’s request for the Commission to subpoena all of the October 10 election’s presiding officers’ worksheets, results from investigations into the alleged frauds, final registration roll (FRR), among others, Korkoya said it may take a longer time, say weeks. He admonished the complainants to be specific in their evidence request, rather than generalizing, if only time would be saved to conduct the ensuing runoff.  
“Such a request from a political party claiming to be intervening in a case filed by another party is only a clever attempt to cause more delay in the electoral process. That will take us weeks to get it done,” he pointed out.

Korkoya added that even though the hearing officer of the Commission is still looking into UP’s concerns and is expected to hand down a ruling today, the party should express their love for country by calling for specific areas of conflict rather than demand the Commission to revisit results from all the 5,390 polling centers across the country.

Concerning Liberty Party’s request of the BOC to recuse itself from hearing its case; he said he could not comment on it because the party’s recusal request is not formally brought before it.

“What we heard on the radio and read in the newspapers about LP calling for our recusal is speculation and it remains a speculation,” he said. “The BOC is a constitutionally organized body that acts based on formal procedures.”

He said the rule of law, in all aspects, including the recognition of the fact that the NEC is a responsible agency should be respected.

“Political parties and individual members of our political processes need to be civil and do away with fabrications. Do not incite the people and cause disunity in the country,” he admonished and called on the public to see the NEC as a mediator rather than a prosecuting arm of the government.

Meanwhile, the presidential runoff slated for Tuesday, November 7, between Senator George Manneh Weah (Coalition for Democratic) and Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai (Unity Party), was suspended due to a writ of prohibition from the Supreme Court filed by the Liberty Party.

Authors

7 COMMENTS

  1. You pallet NEC, you better be ready, with all ballots planted in their places, when God says it is time to re-run or run-off. The Politics of Lies got nothing to do with the direction to Liberia, “the ballot box”. Tell the Republic of Liberia.
    DO NOT REPLY this BIG BOX.

  2. Hahaha……. Korkoyay, it is unfortunate to note that you stepped on the toes of the wrong guys, therefore you are about to be roasted alive. Your fate is sealed, because your “Chief Patron” is unable to protect you, Kpelle Boy. You will burn in the deepest part of hell, because you tried to impose a buffoon on us. No matter how long it takes, your punishment is imminent. You can go right ahead, and conduct your feeble attempts to present a weak defense, we, the well meaning people of Liberia, have already convicted you in The Court of Public Opinion.

  3. In early 2015 through 2016, I served with the Ebola Incident Management System in Monrovia just as the US Department of Defense team was preparing to leave Liberia and close its ETU in Margibi. Our team from the Ministry of Health met with Madam Mary Broh to facilitate the transfer of assets from the US government to the Liberian government through the GSA that Madam Broh was heading. The transfer process started on a rough footing but turned out well in the end. All members of the US delegation including members of the USAID and the US Department of Defense were quite impressed with Mary Broh’s organizational capabilities. One thing I learned quickly was that Mary Broh was very meticulous in requiring her staff to note every asset transfer and keep accurate record and require multiple signatures when assets were removed from the GSA.
    A year before my stint in Liberia ended, we returned to the GSA with Minister Bernice Dahn to resolve questions surrounding some of the assets that had been transferred to Ms. Broh. We held a very professional meeting with Ms. Broh who requested her staff to bring all the records of who, when and what assets were removed. Her records were again impeccable. She gave Dr. Dahn and the team detailed answers with documentation to back her claims. Mary Broh used the experience to educate her staff about the need to document even what seems, when serving as the custodian of public property. This taught me a great life lesson.
    I have run electoral precincts here in the US where I live with my family. During our training as poll workers, we are advised to be very meticulous in documenting and accounting for every used, wasted or destroyed ballot. As the head of my precinct, I must reconcile 100% of the ballots I receive. The reconciliation process is tedious at the end of election night, but necessary to ensure the integrity of the electoral process. We operate knowing that our records could be subpoenaed and we could see ourselves in the court of law.
    This is exactly what has occurred in Liberia. I encourage the NEC to responsibly and investigate the claim of irregularities and submit the data to show irregularities did not occur as NEC claim.
    Even in advance democracies such as those here in the US, we don’t expect 100% accuracy in anything run by humans. Man-made mistakes are expected within an acceptable margin of error. But people can tell if the errors are systemic or intentional once the data is presented. My advice to my people is that we remain peaceful and remember that at the end of the day, we are all Liberians who want the best for our country.

    • So true. But you can’t request records from five thousand plus polling stations.
      There must be targeted stations where the complainants feel that cheating took place, but not entire poll records.
      This request resembles a fishing expedition.

  4. In early 2015 through 2016, I served with the Ebola Incident Management System in Monrovia just as the US Department of Defense team was preparing to leave Liberia and close its ETU in Margibi. Our team from the Ministry of Health met with Madam Mary Broh to facilitate the transfer of assets from the US government to the Liberian government through the GSA that Madam Broh was heading. The transfer process started on a rough footing but turned out well in the end. All members of the US delegation including members of the USAID and the US Department of Defense were quite impressed with Mary Broh’s organizational capabilities. One thing I learned quickly was that Mary Broh was very meticulous in requiring her staff to note every asset transfer and keep accurate record and require multiple signatures when assets were removed from the GSA.
    A year before my stint in Liberia ended, we returned to the GSA with Minister Bernice Dahn to resolve questions surrounding some of the assets that had been transferred to Ms. Broh. We held a very professional meeting with Ms. Broh who requested her staff to bring all the records of who, when and what assets were removed. Her records were again impeccable. She gave Dr. Dahn and the team detailed answers with documentation to back her claims. Mary Broh used the incident to educate her staff about the need to document even what seems mundane, when serving as the custodian of public property. This taught me a great life lesson.
    I have run electoral precincts here in the US where I live with my family. During our training as poll workers, we are advised to be very meticulous in documenting and accounting for every used, wasted or destroyed ballot. As the head of my precinct, I must reconcile 100% of the ballots I receive. The reconciliation process is tedious at the end of election night, but necessary to ensure the integrity of the electoral process. We operate knowing that our records could be subpoenaed and we could see ourselves in the court of law.
    This is exactly what has occurred in Liberia. I encourage the NEC to act responsibly and investigate the claim of irregularities and submit its data to show irregularities did not occur as the NEC claims.
    Even in advance democracies such as those here in the US, we don’t expect 100% accuracy in anything run by humans. Man-made mistakes are expected within an acceptable margin of error. But people can tell if the errors are systemic or intentional once the data is presented. My advice to my people is that we remain peaceful and remember that at the end of the day, we are all Liberians who want the best for our country.

  5. Thanks “Concerned Liberian” for that insightful addition, it does help. However, the Mary Broh example was miniscule compared to what Korkoya faced. First, he was dealing with more people, voters. Second, many of those who worked with NEC during the elections weren’t permanent employees. Third, logistically – for example transporting materials on unpaved swampy roads during rainy season – it was a mammoth challenge.

    NEC’s glaring shortcoming should go to the delay in making public the voters’ listings, or roll. Strangely, with the exception of ALP, none of the political parties joined individuals, journalists, and international monitoring groups that were asking NEC to publish them. In other words, the complaining party leaders failed to exercise their rights to vigilantly monitor the electoral process. Moreover, that UP and CDC were the two left standing didn’t surprise neither voters nor Liberians worldwide. No wonder, then, the feigned righteous indignation of LP’s Brumskine amazed most people.

    That is why many seem to believe Chairman Korkoya that though there were “irregularities”, they didn’t rise to intent to rig the elections for CDC, which reached the run – off twice on its own merit, so the brouhaha is politically momotivated”.

    But that’s all spilled milk, what ought to be done now is to set a date for the run – off; and with LP, ANC, ALP joining UP, it should be a truly competitive race. It is our hope that this time that UP and CDC would go out there to mobilize people and reenergize their bases to avoid further mistakes and delays. Ironically, in one of our Daily Observer comments to Carter Center’s call for publishing voters’ roll, we said politicians who were silent on the concern would later “cry foul” when they lose on October 10: What a bloody shame that our off – the – cuff prediction was prescient.

    We Liberians better get serious about coming together in order to provide equal opportunities for those suffering, otherwise, there could be grave consequences: Those who have ears to hear, let them hear!

  6. J.G. KORKO; isn’t that what POLITICS is all about? Why should anyone be surprised? It’s a dirty game from both sides… Haven’t you heard? “Politics Is A Dirty Game”. Those with Political Ambitions, should understand that; from the start.

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