The National Elections Commission Acting Chairperson has disclosed that the commission through support Liberia and other partners has budgeted US$6, 5900,000 for the conduct of senatorial by-election in Grand Bassa County, following the recent death of Senator John Francis Whitefield.
Cllr. Elizabeth Nelson is optimistic that the amount will cover all electoral activities for the pending by-election.
She made the disclosure on Tuesday during the issuance of writ of elections to the elections magistrate of Grand Bassa and the release of timeline and regulations for the poll.
Madam Nelson stated that the by-election will be conducted on Tuesday, May 7, 2013, while nomination of candidates desirous of contesting the poll begins on March 11-26, this year.
Final list of qualified candidates for the Grand Bassa County Senatorial By-election will be published on April 12, 2013.
"The National Elections Commission wishes to point out that in accordance with the guideline on the registration of political parties and independent candidates, the commission has the right to reject an aspirant, who is not qualified under the new election law of 1986 or the 1986 Constitution of Liberia; subject to the right of appeal to the Supreme Court of Liberia," said the NEC Acting Chair.
Senator John Francis Whitefield passed off on Thursday, January 17, 2013 while in intensive care at the St. Joseph's Catholic Hospital in Monrovia after he suddenly collapsed and suffered breathing difficulty.
The issuance of writ of elections is a requirement of Section 4.3 (2) of the new elections law of 1986, which automatically directs the electoral magistrate of Grand Bassa County to proceed with the conduct of by-election to fill the vacant seat in the Liberian Senate for the county.
"The issuance of the Writ of Election today is being done simultaneously with the release of the timetable for the Senatorial By-election and the regulation for by-election," she pointed out.
Providing statistics of electoral districts, registration centers and precincts, the NEC Boss said according to the final registration roll of 2011, Grand Bassa County has five electoral districts; 124,280 registered voters; 176 voting precincts and 336 polling places, respectively.
Although the official candidates' registration process has not begun, but among the names emerging from the county for the Bassa Senatorial seat is ex-defense minister Daniel Chea.