By Alex Yomah
At long last, the Board of Commissioners, (BOC) of the National Elections Commission, (NEC) has rendered final decision in four separate election cases following mandates from the Honorable Supreme Court of Liberia.
One of the noticeable rulings was the case involving Maryland County Senator, Dan Morais and the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) over constitutional interpretation of the CDC’s own document that cemented the political marriage making up the Coalition.
The Coalition is comprised of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) headed by now President George Manneh Weah; National Patriotic Party (NPP) presided over by Vice President, Jewel Howard Taylor; the Liberia Peoples Democratic Party (LPDP) led by former House Speaker and now Senatorial candidate, J. Alex Tyler.
Senator Morais had contended Chapter-7, section (g) contained in the coalition which states, “That parties which have seats in the legislature shall reserve the right to nomination to the seat. In constituencies where the coalition members don’t have seats, the candidates that provide the best option for victory shall be considered as the Coalitions nominees. The Coalition’s MOU states that wherever the Coalition has an incumbent lawmaker, only that incumbent lawmaker’s party has the sole right to place candidate in that electoral district or county”.
Senator Morais had insisted that the coalition shouldn’t have conducted primary except the NPP who he claimed reserves that legal authority citing Chapter (7) of the coalition’s document.
Senator Morais won initial ruling from NEC which exception was taken to seek the Board of Commission’s ruling which was later headed to the Supreme Court, high court of the land where a decision was taken that subsequently led to DOC’s final decision.
In the final rulings read by Davidetta Browne Lansanah, BOC said that after a careful review of the records of the Candidate Nomination Committee as mandated by the Honorable Supreme Court of Liberia, records showed that Honorable H. Dan Marias has already registered as an Independent Candidate which among other things, prompted the DOC to declare the case, Coalition for Democratic Change by and through its Chairman Mulbah Morlu verses Senator H. Dan Marias mute.
In the second ruling of the BOC, read by Commissioner Boakai A. Dukuly, “The Board said it was the holding of the Board that the Candidate Nomination Committee did not err and that the decision of the Committee denying and dismissing Mr. Jackson Morlu’s complaint was confirmed and affirmed”.
“The third ruling of the BOC issued today, Tuesday, November 4, 2020 and read by Commissioner Barsee Leo Kpangbai, BOC ruled that in the case of George B. Samah growing out of the action, application for nomination said the Candidate’s Nomination Committee did not err when it denied Mr. Samah’s nomination appeal after failing to meet all of the requirements set by the Committee. After the ruling was excepted, Cllr. Jimmy Saah Bombo announced an appeal to the Supreme Court of Liberia”.
In the final ruling of the Board of Commissioners, read by Commissioner Cllr. Ernestine Morgan Awar, in the case, Mulbah Jarkollie, out of the action, Application for Nomination the BOC holds the decision of its Candidate Nomination Committee that the committee did not err. Commissioner Morgan Awar said the decision of the Committee denying and dismissing Mr. Mulbah Jarkollie’s complaint was therefore confirmed and affirmed.
Adding, “Cllr. Morgan Awar in the board’s ruling said in the case, Candidate Nomination Process, in which Mr. Jarkollie was seeking to reopen or extend the nomination process on ground of illness, the BOC was exercising its Administrative and Regulatory functions and not its quasi-judicial functions as provided by law”
Meanwhile, the legal representative of Mr. Mulbah Jarkollie, Atty. Steven Karr after accepting the ruling also announced an appeal to the Honorable Supreme Court of Liberia.
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