The Chief Dispute Hearing Officer
National Elections Commission
9th Street Sinkor
August 6, 2019
Dear Mr. Chief Dispute Hearing Officer:
Re: AMENDED COMPLAINT
Please accept this letter as a formal amended complaint against The National Elections Commission in District 15, during the just ended By-elections in the form and manner to wit:
- That, prior to the conduct of the by-elections, participating candidates had a meeting with NEC, where it was resolved that NEC would allow for Voter Identification Officers (VIO) to be observed by candidate representatives at every polling place. These observers would be allowed to sit in very close proximity to the VIO to be able to see voter cards and the Voter roll being used by the VIO for all parties to be confident that the individuals coming to vote are indeed registered and reflected on the voter roll. However, on the contrary, this was not upheld in most of the centers in District 15. Instead, observers, who had copies of the final voter roll on hand, were made to sit a distance away from the VIO, which amounts to a breach of the agreement and allowed room for illegitimate voters to vote.
- That on July 27th & 28th, members of the Collaborating Parties held an emergency meeting with NEC, where major concerns were raised about NEC Data on District 15 being provided. These concerns include:
- That the information provided by NEC stating the number of registered voters differed from the number of the Final voter roll. (See attached).
In this meeting, NEC admitted that there were flaws with its online system and mandated their IT personnel to work with the IT persons from the campaign team. This issue was not resolved, as NEC could not provide the source document for the voter roll, which is the only data source which would allow for in depth analysis. Hence, we place the commission on notice that at the hearing, we will cause the issuance of a writ of subpoena duces tecum on the Commission to produce the source document of the voter roll.
It was then agreed that the NEC website would be deactivated and as such would not be used for the electoral process.
- That the Final Voter Rolls of 2017, 2018, and 2019 are inconsistent and have variances, leaving to question, the credibility of the Rolls.
- That NEC’s VIO’s and QC’s were abruptly changed in the last minutes to elections. These new recruits were not trained during the training process and we believe that they were only recruited and placed to carry out fraudulent acts.
- That on the day of election, fraudulently, the Voter Roll being used by VIO were not the same as the roll posted on the wall or the Rolls given to candidates.
- That on the day of election, VIO’s used the series page of the Final Voter Roll to identify potential voters instead of identifying them with their name, voter id, and picture on the roll. This was observed and reported at several centers in District 15 and we believe that this was fraudulently done to allow unregistered voters to vote.
- That on the day of election, Voter Rolls were insecurely brought into NEC centers in the afternoon, which is irregular and left room for fraud. Rolls were not transported in sealed boxes, but rather on motorbikes in the hands on NEC staff.
- That on the day of elections, instead of normal procedures where voters are identified on the voter roll, smartphones were used by NEC staff to identify and direct persons to voting areas, where they were allowed to be identified with these unauthentic voter rolls being used by VIO’s. This left room for:
- Illegitimate voters to be allowed to vote
- It gave NEC staff discretion to allow anybody to vote
- It allowed for access to NEC’s admittedly flawed online database
It is important to note that this flawed online database lists voters that are not found on the Final Voter Roll.
- At the July 26th & 27th meeting with NEC, our technicians requested for the list of voters who replaced their cards. This list was provided and it was stated by NEC that the Voter Roll would indicate every individual that had been replaced, as normally done in previous elections. On the contrary, it was observed that the voter roll did not indicate “replaced” on all of the voters, who had replaced their ID’s. This logically led room for:
- Multiple cards being issued to the same person
- Voter cards being issued by unscrupulous people, with intention to rig the election, WHICH WE BELIEVED HAPPENED IN DISTRICT 15 BY-ELECTIONS. It is important to note that these concerns were raised with the NEC political affairs officer by Candidate Urey in early July.
It is important to note that out of the replaced ID cards in District 15, over 60% were done in quarantined areas.
NEC’s Data Center deliberately fraudulently omitted this in order to allow for duplicity.
- That on election day at Samuel T. Kun Precinct building, it was discovered that a Voter Identification Officer was using a completely different voter roll than the one officially assigned for that room. This was caught by our observer and admitted by the NEC workers, after which they claim it was changed. Observers were denied access to complaint forms. We ask that this precinct be quarantined and further investigation be done.
- That on election day at Donald N. Karanas, our observers and supervisors were arrested and removed from their assigned precinct and detained at the Central Police Station, under the instruction of 105. This led to these polling places being left vulnerable and without poll watchers/supervisors, creating avenues for fraudulent acts at the detriment of Candidate Urey. We ask that this precinct be quarantined and further investigation be done.
- That at Joana Antoe, it was noticed that voters were being allowed into polling places without their names being recognized on the voter rolls placed by NEC on the walls. Instead, there were phones being used to allow these unknown persons into polling places. We ask that this precinct be quarantined and further investigation be done.
- That at The Kingdom Embassy Precinct, addendum lists were being used to allow people not on the voter roll to vote. We ask that this precinct be quarantined and further investigation be done.
- At Myrae E. Simspon Precinct, there were people allowed to vote that did not appear on the final voter roll. It was also discovered that there were names on the 2019 roll that did not appear on the 2018 roll. We ask that this precinct be quarantined and further investigation be done.
- After recognizing these election day issues, a complaint was filed with the Magistrate on July 30th and these affected areas were ordered quarantined. At the time of the quarantine, official tallying had not begun for District 15 Representative by-election.
- To our utmost surprise, on the morning of July 31st, our observers at the National Tally Center found that the quarantined areas had been tampered with and tallied overnight, in the absence of observers and when official tallying had closed. This raised concerns by our observers; there after candidate Urey complained to the Magistrate, Hearing officer, and Political Affairs Director. This makes Ms. Urey to reasonably believe that the quarantined boxes had been tampered with by the NEC. With this, we place the Commission on notice that at the hearing, we will cause the issuance of a writ of subpoena duces tecum on the commission to produce the sealed quarantined boxes.
- The fact that these quarantined areas were quarantined and then secretly tallied under the cover of darkness, brings to question the impartiality and motive of NEC officials.
- T1 contains the used FRR. T2 contains used and unused ballot papers. T3 carries record of count and Presiding officer worksheet. None of these boxes would have needed to be tampered with in order to tally for senatorial elections, therefore we expect that the Series code found on the boxes should reflect the closing code used on election day.
- Furthermore bringing into question the impartiality of NEC was the announcement of the first provisional elections results by Chairman Korkoya on July 31st. In his announcement, he claimed to be releasing results from 65 out of 94 polling places in District 15, representing .
- At the time of the announcement, only 57 out of 94 polling places had been officially tallied at the NEC tallying center.
- What bothers a prudent mind is that there is no configuration of 65 out of 74 polling stations that would have given candidate Abu Kamara a lead of nearly 1000 votes ahead of candidate Urey, but for possible inclusion of the sealed quarantined areas, which legally should have not been officially tallied.
Candidate Urey made several queries with NEC officials into where these absurd numbers came from and requested supporting documents that listed the polling places that the results derived. The requests were never granted and no other information was provided as to where this announcement came from.
On Friday, August 2nd, NEC released its second provisional results. In this announcement, Chairman Korkoya released the results for what he claimed was 74 polling centers in District 15. Interestingly, in this announcement, the absolute number of votes of Abu Kamara decreased, while candidate Urey’s absolute number votes increased by 1025. Logically, it is important to note that numbers do not fluctuate, but only percentages do. NEC fraudulently provided false information to the public in order to give another candidate a leader’s advantage over Telia Urey, only to change their course of actions after being confronted by Candidate Urey. Therefore, the trend that NEC’s numbers took after persistent query by Candidate Urey, brings to question the motive, credibility and impartiality of NEC.
- With all of these points considered, it can logically be concluded that NEC, specifically its Data Center led by Mr. Floyd Sayor, which is responsible for providing the foundation of the election- credible data and systems- and following election’s procedures to promote free and fair elections, is engaged in fraud and duplicity that led to an election that lacked credibility.
In view of the foregoing fraud, irregularities, credibility and impartiality questions, the Campaign Team of Ms. Telia Urey respectfully pray that Your Honor will order a rerun of District 15 election in view of the of the mentioned above. Additionally, we respectfully pray that Your Honor will order that the FRR be completely cleaned up in the presence of stakeholders to ensure credibility of this and all future election. We also respectfully pray that Your Honor will order The Data Department staff be immediately dismissed and further investigated for fraudulently manipulating NEC’s system to the extent that NEC’s credibility is being seriously questioned.
Telia Urey Bishop Slebo Frank