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Rep. Koon Writes House To
Amend 1986 Elections Law

By Bill W. Cooper
Ahead of the 2023 General and Presidential Elections, Montserrado County District 11 Representative, Richard Nagbe Koon has called for the quick and timely amendment of the 1986 Elections Law of Liberia.
Rep. Koon, among other things stated that if the country’s Elections Law of 1986 are amended to the reality of time, it will address those stone-aged problems that the country continues to encounter over the years.
In his communication to his colleagues read in plenary yesterday, the Montserrado County lawmaker pointed out that the law, when amended, will improve the framework, context and conduct of elections as well as improve transparency greatly that will continue to sustain free and fair elections across the country.
Rep. Koon explained that the amended elections law will also ensure a level playing field for all political parties and independent candidates participating in politics and are also vying for public elective offices in Liberia, noting that it will as well provide equitable representation of eligible voters and equal constituency representation in the country’s body politics.
He maintained, “This amended law will further create separate institution to handle and adjudicate electoral complaints, appeals and therefore go to the Supreme Court for final ruling; and knowing that the Commission can be overwhelmed with electoral complaints which always have had some negative perception on the capacity and neutrality of the commission to effectively execute its core mandate.”
According to him, there are so many stone-aged issues that don’t conform with present day realities, and thereby recounted that in 1847 to 1924, there were five counties, while in 1964, the number of counties increased to nine and in 1984, two other counties were added thus making it 11 counties with a population of a little over 2 million people as per the 1984 census,” Rep. Koon intimated.
“Hon. Speaker and colleagues, the establishment of political parties since 1984 as it relates to the number of qualified voters is 500 per county and from only six counties out of eleven counties, making it a total of 3,000 qualified voters for the establishment of political parties since 1984,” he stated.
“Colleagues, the last official census in 2008 recorded 3.7 million people after 24 years ranging from 1984-2008 and presently based on UNFPA, our knowledge population as established currently stands at 4.7 million since 2017. So, our country now has 15 counties with an unofficial population with a little over 5 million as such, colleagues let us see it proper that the formation of this is just one of so many stone-aged problems,” he added.
Rep. Koon further stated, “This is strictly a non-Constitutional issue so it is prudent and equally essential that we as the people’s direct representatives amend the 1986 elections law on a timely basis for the good and betterment of this country.”
The Montserrado County lawmaker further noted that as a country and looking at the reality of modern age, it has gone almost 36 years since these election guidelines were revisited, something he described as a startling revelation.
Meanwhile, plenary through a motion from Rep. Madison Gwon forwarded the instrument to the House Committees on Judiciary, Good Governance and Election with the mandate to report within two weeks.

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