UP, LP, ANC Leaders Accept Supreme Court Ruling, Albeit with Different Perspectives

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In principle, Boakai, Brumskine and Cummings all accept the Supreme Court's ruling, but have divergent perspectives on he implications, going forward.

By Gloria T. Tamba & Alvin Worzi

The ruling Unity Party through its standard bearer Vice President Joseph Nyuma Boakai has accepted the Supreme Court final ruling on the run-off of the 2017 Presidential and Legislative Election and has urged the National Elections Commission to make public the Voters Roll and address other irregularities for to ensure a transparent run-off election.

Speaking shortly after the Supreme Court’s decision yesterday at a press conference at UP’s headquarters in Congo Town, he said the Supreme Court is the highest court in the land and the final arbiter of the dispute, which has come down with its decision.

“We would therefore like to state without equivocation that the Unity Party accepts the ruling of the High Court. This decision, and the road we took with collaborating parties, are unprecedented and should give all of us hope that the future of our democracy and country is bright. Liberians can now celebrate the triumph of the rule of law! Liberians can now celebrate their resolved to pursue non-violent means of solving problems,” VP Boakai said.

VP Boakai said in light of the deliberate and mischievous attempts by detractors to distort the intervention by UP and collaborating parties to ensure a transparent and clean electoral process, void of manipulation of any kind, he is constrained to set the record straight for the benefit of the Liberian people.

“The UP’s intervening action in support of Liberty Party’s challenge was not a selfish or opportunistic one, nor was it in any way a strategy to unnecessarily cause delay and  prolong the electoral process, as alleged by  detractors,” he said.

On October 10 this year, Liberians trooped to the polls to fulfil their constitutional mandate, symbolizing a determination to consolidate the gains of peace and ensure that the democratic and inalienable rights were duly exercised.

He called on the National Elections Commission to adhere to the request made by the Supreme Court, especially in addressing the publication of the Voters Roll and other key issues to ensure a free, fair and transparent run-off election.

Vice President Boakai also called on Liberians to address their concerns and problems through the court of law and avoid every means of violence in the country, and recounted that in 1927, Liberia made history that earned her an unenviable place in the Guinness Book of Record with the most fraudulent elections in the world.

Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine of the opposition Liberty Party (LP), said he and his partisans are disappointed by the Supreme Court’s ruling, which among other things, has violated “our equal protection right, as provided in Article 11(c) of the Constitution.”

“The Court ordered the correction of some of the things that we complained of, that made the electoral process unconstitutional and unlawful that contributed to massive fraud, and pervasive irregularities, as conditions for holding the run-off, but failed to similarly ensure equal protection for the other eighteen political parties,” Cllr. Brumskine said.

He noted that Liberia has come of age, adding, “Finally Liberians can disagree and not kill each other and destroy our country.”

“I have always said, our legal action and pursuit of justice was not just about me, or just about the Liberty Party,” he said.

He said the Supreme Court can rule against an aggrieved political party, and its judgment is accepted, notwithstanding “our disagreement, as to both the Court’s determination of the facts and their conclusion of the law. Our people are truly witnessing the transition from negative to positive peace.”

The standard bearer of the opposition Alternative National Congress (ANC), Alexander B. Cummings, said after all considerations, prayers, and consultations the ANC decided not to endorse any of the political parties for the run-off.

“We are asking all partisans to vote their conscience, and what they believe in their hearts to be right for the country given the two choices. This was not an easy decision, but one we believe serves the best interest of our party and the country,” Cummings said.

Cummings said he is asking ANC partisans to demand from both candidates’ four pertinent commitments that are core to the ANC’s platform, including support for “Our continuous freedom.”

“Liberians have enjoyed unprecedented peace and freedom over the last 12 years. I am asking that our partisans demand from whomever they support that they will sustain our peace and ensure that this freedom continues – specifically, freedom of speech and freedom of political association,” he said. He also named the radical fight against corruption, empowering Liberian businesses and election reform.

Mr. Cummings said, “I remain committed to uplifting Liberia and empowering all Liberians. I will do this through business and philanthropy.”

18 COMMENTS

  1. The next step should be; make every effort to dismantle Liberia’s multiple political parties-system. It’s cleared. People are now aligning with either Unity Party(U P) or Congress For Democratic Change(CDC). Let there be two major political parties and a slot for one independent candidate. Henceforth, all
    primary elections to select a standard bearer or contestant for the Presidency of Liberia, should be left up to the two major political parties; at their own expense. Anyone contesting as an Independent Candidate, will/shoud be required to meet a set criteria. There’s no need for twenty or more different political parties. The political platform is the same. Everyone wants a BETTER Liberia; no matter, how many political parties. Let there be one national elections day. By popular vote, we will elect Liberia’s next President. That’s what it boils down to…

    • ‘Multiple Political Parties’ is an integral component of Democratic form of government; so, we cannot do away with it.

      But we can separate the goats from the sheep by requiring ALL political parties to re-register with a $1,000,000 USD (one million United States Dollars) registration fee. And, every registrant MUST provide a VALID source of the money they are using to register their political party because we don’t want flaw money entering the electoral process.

      If $1,000,000 USD allows more than five political parties to register; then we should increase the fees to $2, 000,000.
      There should never be limitation on the number of people who can run as Independent Candidates — that is their birth right to run for presidency of the Republic of Liberia but, political parties do not have birth rights.

      • Mr. Cooper; I’m not saying that the PRESIDENCY of Liberia shouldn’t be opened for any/all citizens to contest. My suggestion is that any Presidential Candidate must first be chosen by voters; if they find such person suitable. That’s what the primary elections are about. It’s an election held within a party, to choose a standard bearer. During the primary, there may be as many candidates; however, it’s up to the voters to select one among the many. The same applies to an independent wannabe President. He/she must first be selected by popular votes; in order to be on the ballot for the Presidency. Liberia can’t afford to go through this waste of time and money every six years. We are all in, for a better Liberia. Let there be two major political parties and one “INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE” slot. Indeed! Mr.Cooper; you are absolutely right. The office of the Presidency of Liberia is opened to any qualified citizen of Liberia. It’s not reserved… In the end, it will boil down to the popular votes.

  2. It is true that the Supreme Court of Liberia have come out with the ruling for the run up, but the cleaning up must be done on the following.
    1.The chairman of the NEC shall be changed
    2.Doing the cleaning up the following parties must be present LP,AL,and UP.
    3. The area that these mistakes took place ,these magistrates shall be change.

  3. Joseph Nuymah Boakai, YOU ARE AN UNREPENTANT SELFISH OPPORTUNIST VERY DANGEROUS to ever become president of Liberia. You must be deceiving yourself and those who have not seen through your hipocrisy, or those who are as corrupt as you are (EG. Varney Sherman, Benoni Urey, etc. etc.)!

    Your strategy has been to “unnecessarily cause delay and prolong the electoral process” with the motive and intent to give the Unity Party a third term, TO PERPETUATE CORRUPTION, IMPUNITY, with the intent TO ENRICH YOU AND YOUR GROUP-THE ELITE, THEREBY CONTINUOUSLY MAKING THE MASSES AN UNFORGOTTEN PEOPLE IN THEIR OWN LAND.

    As for you Brumskine, the fact speak for itself, since in fact, the ruling of the Supreme Court has resounded into your sickening ears what the whole nation has been saying that: as all around the world, there are bound to be irregularities, and even fraud, BUT SUCH LAPSES SHOULD NEVER WARRANT A RE-RUN, ONCE SUCH LAPSES ARE NOT NATIONWIDE. SHAME ON YOU BRUMSKINE.

    And you Cummings–Mr. I will create 100,000 jobs in 3 months. A DAMN LIAR! You should be ashamed of yourself, YOU JOKER, HIPPOCRITE, LIAR, HUSTLER, AND A FAKE! The proof of all these smelly labels been rightly your nature and the stuff of which you have made of is seen in the fact that you are NOW ONLY telling your supporters to “vote their conscience” AFTER YOU HAVE GANGED-UP WITH YOUR FELLOW LOOSERS TO DESTROY THE ELECTIONS AND HAVE FAILED MISSERABLY VIA THE VERDICT OF THE SUPREME COURT.

  4. Joseph Nuymah Boakai, YOU ARE AN UNREPENTANT SELFISH OPPORTUNIST VERY DANGEROUS to ever become president of Liberia. You must be deceiving yourself and those who have not seen through your hipocrisy, or those who are as corrupt as you are (EG. Varney Sherman, Benoni Urey, etc. etc.)!

    Your strategy has been to “unnecessarily cause delay and prolong the electoral process” with the motive and intent to give the Unity Party a third term, TO PERPETUATE CORRUPTION, IMPUNITY, with the intent TO ENRICH YOURSELF AND YOUR GROUP-THE ELITE, THEREBY CONTINUOUSLY MAKING THE MASSES AN UNFORGOTTEN PEOPLE IN THEIR OWN LAND.

    As for you Brumskine, the fact speaks for itself, since in fact, the ruling of the Supreme Court has resounded into your sickening ears what the whole nation has been saying that: as all around the world, there are bound to be irregularities, and even fraud, BUT SUCH LAPSES SHOULD NEVER WARRANT A RE-RUN, ONCE SUCH LAPSES ARE NOT NATIONWIDE. SHAME ON YOU BRUMSKINE.

    And you Cummings–Mr. I will create 100,000 jobs in 3 months. A DAMN LIAR! You should be ashamed of yourself, YOU JOKER, HIPPOCRITE, LIAR, HUSTLER, AND A FAKE! The proof of all these smelly labels been rightly your nature and the stuff of which you have made of is seen in the fact that you are NOW ONLY telling your supporters to “vote their conscience” AFTER YOU HAVE GANGED-UP WITH YOUR FELLOW LOOSERS TO DESTROY THE ELECTIONS AND HAVE FAILED MISSERABLY VIA THE VERDICT OF THE SUPREME COURT.

    • @Kandajaba Zoebohn Zoedjallah

      Is your vocabulary so low to the extent that all you say is insulting words?
      According to the headline, the people you’re insulting have accepted the Supreme Court’s decision. I wonder how would you have reacted had they refused to accept that decision … Hmmm.

      Don’t waste your time trying to insult me because I’m above responding to insults in kind.

  5. Freeman,
    You’ve hit a nerve! Because of that, I couldn’t agree with you more. Yes, Liberia does not need a Parliamentary democracy. Since we’ve got a president as head of the government, there’s no need for 100 parties. We need only two “major” political parties. If two parties exist, 50 qualified individuals who which to run, will do so. But it will depend on the message of a candidate. If a candidate’s message is right or wrong for the republic, the handwriting that appears on the wall makes the process of elimination to take hold.

  6. Bill Cooper,
    You’ve made a point that’s of particular interest. It’s about the formation of political parties in Liberia. Now, as much as I would like to agree, I am sorry I cannot go to the 100% mark. I will give you 85%, as you know, it’s a solid B! Is that cool?

    So, you want to separate the goats from the sheep. I don’t know who the goats or sheep are, but my issue is the amount you’re proposing. I think a million bucks is a little too much. You are on the ball as it relates to registering mega parties. Ours is a small country. Because of that, I don’t think it makes sense for 25 political parties to form.

    I see your logic. By making a registration requirement of a million bucks, the potential candidates or “dreamers”, as I call them will think twice. Okay, so who are goats or the sheep? Will the haves be considered the sheep or the wealthy? Maybe the goats will find themselves in the “have not” column, the poor. Okay.

    The problem with that is this. The wealthy may have 5 senses, but they need 6 senses. Of course, the 6th sense is as you know is called “common sense”. The poor may have the 6th sense, but the tools or capacity to lead may be lacking. A poor uneducated person may embarrass us when he or she meets a foreign head of state. I am talking about poor English!

    So this is my bottom line.
    I think Liberians need two “major” political parties, like in the US and all Western countries. Fellow compatriots, do I get a B?

  7. Our Supreme Court, with all due respect in this crucial deliberation, might have just saved our new found Representative Democracy from descending into chaos. This landmark case (LP & et al. vs NEC), was not only about overturning the Oct. 10th election per se. It was also about exercising one’s constitutional rights to due process under the equal protection of the law where the National Election Laws have been violated.

    This lawsuit was also about the principle of making sure that Liberia’s present and future elections be exercised in a free, fair, and transparent manner. That is the crust of bringing this lawsuit to the Supreme Court even though it was mathematically impossible for Brumskine, or Cummings to win if the SC had called for a re-run.

    The benefits of this Supreme Court decision to Liberia Election process: This Decision was a win-win constitutional dispensation for Liberian fledgling democracy. Though the delay of not carrying out the scheduled Nov. 7th re-run election had the propensity of creating a Constitutional vacuum in Liberia’s presidential succession, the Supreme Court timely resolution shined light on many problems encountered during the Oct. 10th election. The court asked NEC to speedily address these election problems and find corrective measures like making public the Final Voters Registration Roll (FRR) to make sure the run-off is free, fair and transparent.

    The danger that still lies for future government of Liberia is that Liberia has transformed from the old “Iron Rule of Oligarchy” under the True Whig Party (one Party state system that was totally in the hands of a small wealthy group) to the new “Iron Rule of Particracy”. Particracy is government where one or more political parties dominate the political process.

    This paradigm shift in Liberia’s political dispensation is dangerous for our newly found Democracy. It disenfranchises and ostracizes people from the losing party or parties. Those who do not ascribed to political parties do not benefit from the economic prosperity of the country. This type of sectarianism called democracy has the tendency of attracting our vulnerable unemployed youths to be die-hard followers just for economic gains.

    Leaders of these political parties are becoming Gurus, or Messianic. When our vulnerable and poor Liberians look up to them for leadership because of their wealth and fame, these party leaders developed a sense of superiority. They can impose their will on their followers either positively or negatively. We have witnessed this party loyalty in past mob violence around Liberia.

    This exclusionary tactics of “not being a member of my party” should not deprive other Liberians who are non-party members from enjoying their constitutional rights to freedom of speech, equality, and justice. In the new government, let not the “Iron Rule of Partisanship” deny Liberians from exercising their constitutional rights.

    May God grant us peace in Liberia and the world!!!!

  8. Let Liberia stay as it is! Perhaps another country or power will come to clean up the
    messes including corruption. Liberians have been and continue to live with this kind
    corruption in electoral process from all the way in Tubman administration to Ellen
    Johnson-Sirleaf and nothing has been done about it. The Supreme Court of this Republic
    should had listen to what the Liberian people were saying that these unethical, frauds,
    irregularities and lack of transparency in the electoral process of October 10, 2017 are
    a result of the private meeting President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf called at her private
    home of the NEC Chairman, staff and workers and instructed them that her choice in
    those is CDC George Weah, and the only way to give him victory is to allow only the
    majority of the young people to vote but should turn away most of the matured men and
    women who, in fact, legally registered to vote. That exactly how the NEC conducted the
    elections. Did the Supreme Court take issue with that private meeting at President Ellen
    Sirleaf private home just before the October 10, 2017 polls? Not at all!

    Of course the Supreme Court has spoken but it did not help the situation at alll! Liberians
    will still live with massive corruption we saw under President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. There
    is no way another country will come to aid Liberia rid her of corruption in all the sectors.

  9. The real dancing just started after the supreme court decision, Liberians and Liberia can smile again because of God decreed peace on our nation. The plain level field has been established outside the courtroom, let those that can run- run and let those that can not run-stay. Liberia must has a smooth transition of leadership in January 2018.

  10. Kandajawa, Zobohn Zoedjallah, must be a man/woman from the moon who knows little or nothing about Liberia and the few Liberians who have served and continue to serve in the government of their country with credit and distinction. His Excellency, Joseph Nyumah Boikai, is one of such men. He is a distinguished citizen who has served his country in many capacities including that of Vice President, with humility, devotion and honesty. Prior to his becoming Vice President and as Vice President, he has shown himself to be patriotic, diligent, honest, respectful and trustworthy. At no time, has Honorable Boakai’s name, during his many years of distinctive service in government, being associated with corruption. He has not and never has been charged for any misfeasance, malfeasance or nonfeasance. There are no records describing him as such. To therefore ascribe derogatory charges on him at this time of his distinctive political service to his country and people shows how ungrateful and dangerous one can be.
    Indeed you must be living in a strange world of your own. Our dear Joe Boakai is not corrupt as you and others on the moon would want us believe. He is honest, patriotic, God fearing, and seeks to better the welfare and well-being of all the people. In brief: He is the “man of the people, for the people, and by the people.” A distinguished and well minted democrat of which all, including you, should be proud of and not unjustifiably denigrate at this time of his credit worthy political career. “Vox Populi, Vox Dei”(the voice of the people, is the voice of God.)

  11. The Supreme Liberian Judiciary has done their job on the run-off. We should now concentrate on a Speaker of the House in action. Can a passive speaker serve the people in both capacities in propelling the budget (2017-2018) that incudes a new inauguration and other crucial issues while running along side the President of the Liberian Senate who is also an aspirant (1 of 2) for the Presidency of the entire nation? Don’t we think that both of them mates should stay away from Legislative activities while the Liberian people elect a new leader? Is the sitting Vice-President part of the Legislative branch or the Executive branch of the Liberian government while he is still a mate of the incumbent Executive who must constitutionally hand over the Liberian Presidential cutlass on inauguration day? This issue of the Speaker and present 2nd level Run-off should be solved immediate by the Legislative Branch of Government. Do not call the other two Judiciary or Executive in it. They have their own function. Solve the problem or be voted out by the Liberian people. The nation will make the correction soon. The executive digger has already been taken away from her, parked at the people’s executive mansion waiting for orders from the next new chief executive to continue with the cat’s cap. The present speaker should right now give the lower House’s digger to the Legislative cap to put in its warehouse until after the election since he is a running mate.
    Gone in silence. Talk to the Liberian people. Do not answer my box.

  12. The Supreme Court has done its job, a phenomenal job at best. A rerun has been stricken. A runoff is granted. The powerful message from the Supreme Court is this: the rule of law is upheld and there’s hope for demoncracy in Liberia. The Liberians have kept their cool. The country is at peace.

    Area of concern:
    The NEC must be revamped after the runoff! A change in the NEC’s ranks must be considered a top majority irrespective of who wins. Boakai must win!

    Recommendations:

    1. Minimum wage laws are needed in Liberia.

    2. Elections are needed in the 15 counties every two years. Example, mayors and superintendents must run to be elected, not appointed. For the “unread” that’ll be a learning experience. (In the PG county Maryland, I used to be an elections judge!).

    3. The title “superintendent” must be scrapped and replaced with “governor” in the counties.

    4. Liberians need to have coins, not paper money all the time! Our money is mutilated because there aren’t coins. Our kids go to school and learn about coins. When they leave the classroom, there aren’t coins…….12 years in the making. Rediculus

    5. Since road construction is becoming a priority in Liberia, we need to built “inter-county tolls”. I mean real tolls whereby an attendant cannot steal a dime! Example, a toll booth is needed between Margibi and Montserrado and so on throughout the country. At least $0.25 for all motorists except:
    Presidential motorcade,
    Fire bragade,
    Ambulance or
    Police or military emergency activity.

    All Senators, Representatives, government officials must pay the 0.25 fee. No silly questions such as “you know who I am?”

    Attendant’s response should any government employee or assemblyman-woman who might be a doofus asks: ” No, I don’t know who you are. Pay your .25 and shut your gates. Don’t hold up traffic”!

    6. Affordable public housing should be built in surrounding counties in order to de-populate Monrovia. With good roads, a government employee, student or any civil servant worker can drive his/her car from Kakata at 7am and arrive in downtown Monrovia 8:30am. Lastly,

    7. Liberian schools need computers! I don’t give a hoot whether a school is located in the boondock of Loffa, Grand Bassa or Nimba. Our kids need to learn and know something about the internet. More to come…..

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