Supreme Court Opens Argument in Lofa Electoral Fraud Case

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Justices of the Supreme Court on Thursday, February 18, opened an argument into allegation of irregularities in the just ended December 8 Special Senatorial Election in Lofa County won by former Defense Minister J. Brownie Samukai.

The opening of the hearing comes just days after four of the five justices denied Samukai’s appeal seeking the justices to overturn a guilty verdict rendered against him (Samukai) by the Criminal Court ‘C’, mandating him to restitute over US$1million that was withdrawn from the pension account of soldiers of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).

It has been clarified that the Supreme Court’s decision does not have anything to do with Samukai’s Senatorial seat, of which some citizens are expressing opinions that he does not need to take the seat after being convicted.

Ahmed Kromah and James K. Mallay, both registered voters of District#4 in Upper Lofa County, and Kesselly Gayflor and Peter Flomo, also registered voters of District#5 in Upper Lofa County, are they who are seeking the court’s intervention.

None of the complainants contested as a candidate in the just ended December 8 Special Senatorial Election.

Prior to going to the Supreme Court, the National Elections Commission (NEC) had denied similar complaint filed before it by those citizens.

They are claiming that there were irregularities in the conduct of the special senatorial election, which accusation the electoral body has rejected and subsequently announced Samukai as the winner.

They also alleged that about 24 tabulation sheets/record of the count, accounting for over 3,394 actual votes were unstamped by election officials. 

The actual number of registered voters in the 24 polling places in question was about 12,000 although only about 4,000 people voted.

On numerous occasions, it has been said that in order for a state or individual to bring a case to the court, especially the Supreme Court, he or she must show that he is injured.

Probably the Supreme Court on this basis would decide whether the four individuals, who were not candidates during the special senatorial election but voters, were ever injured in the process.

In this case, the complainants need to show that they were injured by the way the election in Lofa County was conducted.

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