17 November 2017

Liberia: Former NEC Boss Denies Calling for Interim Government

Photo: New Democrat
Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission Boss, Counsellor Frances Johnson-Allison

Former Chairperson of the National Elections Commission and former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia, Cllr. Francis Johnson Allison denies ever claims of calling for an interim government here.

Cllr. Allison, who took the witness stand at the National Elections Commission on behalf of the ruling Unity Party, told the NEC hearing officer in her testimony that at no point in time did she call for formation of an interim government to the country elections upon expiration of the tenure of incumbent President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

When questioned by defense lawyer Cllr. Musa Dean whether she is the same Cllr. Francis Johnson Allison, who went on a talk show, calling for an interim government, she replies, "I did not call for an interim government, those that said it did not listen properly."

The former Chairperson of the NEC was testifying in the case file by third place holder in the October 10th, 2017 elections, Liberty Party against the poll results, something which prompted the ruling Unity Party and three other opposition political parties to form a compulsory joiner in challenge to the result.

The ruling UP and the Coalition for Democratic Change are to faceoff in a runoff to be decided, pending adjudication complaints before the NEC.

In its complaint to the National Elections Commission, the LP cites violation of the Constitution, massive fraud, and gross irregularities in the October 10, 2017 Presidential and Representative Elections.

But appearing on the witness stand on November 15, 2017 in the James Fromayan Conference Hall at the NEC headquarters, Cllr. Alison says her knowledge about problems surrounding the October 10, 2017 polls is gathered from media reportage, and the NEC hearing.

"I am being alarmed by the kinds of things that I heard, firstly, we went into the election without the Final Voters Registration Roll and that was very strange to me, because that is the most important instrument that can be used to conduct an election".

She asks, how else you know who are eligible voters or those who are registered, and the number of register voters, that was strange and to date, no final Registration Roll had been published.

According to her, she heard about people uncovering ballot papers in southeast Liberia, saying, "I wonder how could this had happened after having an election then you have people complaining, some did not register, some did not vote, and even voting centers open late; these are the things that have been coming up."

Cllr. Alison continues that it's disturbing that why she respects the ongoing process to uncover the truth about what happened on Election Day, saying, "These are not normal occurrences, I cannot go to election and don't know how many voters, but these are things I heard and that occurred from the just-ended election."


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