The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

UPP Candidate Loses Protest

United People’s Party (UPP’s) candidate in the Saturday, October 5, Senatorial By-elections held in Grand Cape Mount County has lost the protest fight in an effort to revert the result of the elections.
Sando Wayne of the UPP and Simeon Taylor of the Alternative National Congress (ANC) are the two of the seven candidates who filed separate complaints with the National Elections Commission (NEC) citing alleged elections’ irregularities.
With that, NEC held hearings in the complaint of the UPP and that seems to have concluded with the Board of Commissioners alleging that “there were no irregularities in the October 5, 2019, senatorial by-elections.”
This has now paved the way for the People’s Unification Party (PUP’s) candidate, Victor Varney Watson, whose certification was placed on hold having been declared the winner for some time will perhaps now go ahead anytime.
However, Sando Wayne said the protest hearings at the NEC headquarter in Monrovia was important to expose the truth of what Cape Mount County voters are enduring because they are unaware of the Hard Work Company and its CEO Idrissa Massaray’s rampant violation.
He noted that NEC played blind eye to the regular crossover to Liberia of thousands of Sierra Leone nationals by the Hard Work Company and Idrissa Massaray, to vote in Cape Mount’s election for his candidate of choice.
Wayne’s protest to NEC raised the alleged discovery of wet ballot papers at ONLY the Bendaja Polling station and expressed concern over the circumstances that led to the ballots getting wet and how they were replaced.
Others were the discovery of ballot papers transported over unprotected motorcycles and discovery of several listed names of Sierra Leone Nationals and their Liberian voter registration numbers, and the violation of Article 81 of the Constitution of Liberia and Chapter 7.1 of the Elections Law of Liberia by the Hard Work Company and Idrissa Masarray for covering the election expenses of PUP’s Candidate, Victor Varney Watson in the October 5, 2019 bi-election.
“This is how he (Masarray) put one of his cronies in the House for Cape Mount, and now the NEC’s ruling of October 31, 2019, has again helped him to openly send another crony to the Senate. Grand Cape Mount County democracy is under attack,” he said.
Wayne indicated that this blatant violation of the Constitution of Liberia benefits only Idrissa Massaray, the diamond czar in Mano River Congo, and not the people of Grand Cape Mount County, adding, “Citizens of Grand Cape Mount County must stop Idrissa Masarray from making decisions for the county.”
He stated that they are witnessing a contemptible form of democratic cruelty in the county, and this is responsible for the continued deplorable living conditions and misery of the people of Grand Cape Mount County are suffering. With our protest filed before NEC, we have not only put NEC on notice.”
“We have shined a light on the abuse of democracy in Grand Cape Mount County by NEC’s decision of October 31, 2019 in the election case: Sando Wayne of UPP versus Victor V. Watson of PUP and NEC,” he boasted.
According to Wayne, “the Commission’s verdict in the case did more than to decide just this case. The verdict is an attack on our nascent multi-party democracy! The verdict calls for businesses to violate Article 81 of the Constitution of Liberia and Chapter 7.1 of the Election Law of Liberia.”
He believes that in future elections, Bea Mountain, Sime Darby, Medina Rock Company can all join Hard Work Company to compete for elected office in Grand Cape Mount County. The NEC verdict serves as insurance for those who commit these violations to go with impunity.”
Wayne says that while he declined seeking further appeal in the case to the Supreme Court, he reminded NEC and citizens of the county that the abuse of Cape Mount’s democracy for the purpose of a few interests is over.
He therefore called on citizens and residents of the county to support a citizen initiative to stop the mockery to democracy in the county and called for unity among the contestants to inform the local and international public of the real truth of what takes place in Cape Mount County’s elections.
Wayne then paid tribute to the people of Grand Cape Mount County for their show of support for his candidacy as well as all other contestants who participated in the election, consistent with the Election Laws of Liberia.
He extended profound gratitude and commendation to the Liberia Media Development Initiative (LMDI) for contributing to the growth of democracy in Grand Cape Mount County by organizing two debates, which increased voters’ awareness of the visions proffered by all the candidates for the County.
Wayne observed that while there are encouraging signs for the development and growth of a democratic culture in the county, citizens of Cape Mount must unite, resist, and strongly condemn all the perpetrators of the recent election violence in Mano River Kongo that resulted to serious injuries of citizens:
“Election is only a contest for voters to express their popular support for who should lead them but they must condemn and denounce anyone who attempts to use election to undermine the unity of our people and disrupt the peace in Grand Cape Mount County,” the UPP candidate averred.

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