Monrovia — The National Elections Commission (NEC) has announced January 29 to March 21 as the new schedule for the start of the Voter Roll Update Exercise. The NEC made the pronouncement Thursday at a Press Conference held at the Commission's Headquarters in Monrovia.
The Chairman of the Commission, Cllr. Jerome George Korkoya, said the pronouncement follows negotiations with the relevant government institutions, including the PPCC which granted waiver to the Commission to allow it award contract for the hiring of vehicles needed for the deployment of materials and personnel for the Voter Roll Update Exercise.
Chairman Korkoya said the granting of the waiver follows the issuance of the relevant guarantee to the PPCC by the Ministry of Finance that the NEC has a budgetary appropriation of 5.6 Million United States Dollars in the 2013/2014 National Budget.
As part of efforts to ensure the provision on a timely basis of funding to the process, Chairman Korkoya said the Commission apportioned the Budget for the 2014 Special Senatorial Election in three phases.
Phase I which deals with the Update of the Current Voter Roll and the Exhibition of Provisional Voter Roll has an allotment of 5.6 Million United States Dollars while Phase II, which is principally concerned with Pre-Election Day Activities such as international procurement of Election Day Materials, Candidate Nomination, Printing of Ballots, etc., is budgeted at 3.5 Million United States Dollars.
The third and final phase is Election Day Activities which include recruitment and training of temporary staff and deployment of Election Day personnel and materials. The cost of this phase, Chairman Korkoya said, is budgeted at 4.2 Million United States Dollars.
"It is the expectation of the Commission that 2.6 Million of the allotted USD5.6 M will be used to complete activities under phase one, while the remaining USD 3M will form part of the budget for phase II," Chairman Korkoya intimated.
The NEC Boss said as a result of the postponement, the Commission has incurred an additional cost of USD164, 000 specifically in the area of Civic Education and Hiring of additional Data Processing Staff.
He disclosed that the Voter Roll Update Exercise will now commence in centers that were originally scheduled for January 29, 2014 while Centers that should have been covered between January 13 to 28, 2014 will now be covered last.
The Commission on January 10 postponed the start of the Voter Roll Update Exercise due to the late passage of the Budget for the Fiscal Year 2013/2014 which greatly impacted the international procurement process of the Commission. The cost of conducting the 2014 Special Senatorial Election is put at 15.3 million United States Dollars.