NEC Wants 10-year Residency Clause Suspended



The Inquirer
Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

September 1, 2004

The National Elections Commission of Liberia(NEC), has recommended to the National Transitional Legislative Assembly, the suspension of the controversial Article 52 of the Liberian constitution which bans presidential aspirants who have not resided in the country ten years prior to the holding of an elections from contesting.

The NEC’s recommendation was contained in its final draft proposal for electoral reform towards the holding of the 2005 General and Presidential elections submitted to the national legislature yesterday.

Presenting the draft proposal for electoral reform to the NTLA at the Capitol building, NEC Chairman Cllr. Frances Johnson-Morris said, the draft electoral proposal is seeking the blessing of the NTLA to suspend certain provisions of the Liberian constitution as it has been authorized by the CPA.

She said the document is also seeking the lawmakers’ blessing to amend the National Elections laws of 1986 so as to facilitate the holding of the 2005 general and presidential elections.

The NEC Chairman made specific references to Article 52 of the Liberian constitution.
Commenting on the form of elections to be used during the pending elections, Cllr. Morris said the commission has resolved to use the traditional majoritarian system for the presidency and the Vice presidency, while for the senatorial race, it would use the simple majoritarian system.

For the House of Representatives, the NEC boss said a single non-transferable vote will be used.

Receiving the document on behalf of the NTLA, Acting Speaker Charles Clark assured the NEC that he will immediately submit the electoral draft proposal to the NTLA’s full plenary so that it can begin deliberating on the issue.

Assemblyman Clark who also heads the NTLA Executive Committee, added that the process of electoral reforms is cardinal to the entire peace process as such, the NTLA is taking the issue serious.

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by The Inquirer newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.