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Weah, Others Accused Of Violating Election Laws

By Alex Yomah
The National Elections Commission (NEC) has reiterated calls for politicians who are involved in pre-campaign activities to desist, terming such act as a flagrant of violation of elections’ Law.
The NEC made the statement in Ganta during a two-day workshop on elections reporting organized by the National Elections Commission through its Department of Communication and funded by UNDP which among other things, was intended to sharpen media’s workers skills in elections’ reporting.
The NEC made a specific reference to recent statement made by President George Weah when he broke ground for the construction of the modern Duala market, in which NEC accused both opposition and ruling parties of pre-campaigning.
NEC Deputy Executive Director for program, Atty. Nathan K. Garbie, described as “electoral offense” Pre-campaign activities by any politician.
Recently, NEC, in a press statement frowned on all partiies of rampant illegal campaign activities since the Supreme Court issued Stay-order on all election issues.
Atty. Garbie said if anyone Liberian files a complaint that is backed with facts, the law gives NEC the legal power to act consistent with law regardless of status.
It can be noted that recently in Monrovia, President Weah admonished Liberians when he undertook another development in Duala to go all out to elect the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) candidates across Liberia during the ensuing senatorial election and also to mark yes for the changes proposed in the National Referendum.
According to NEC guidelines, the commission should have declared campaign opened on October 10, but the process was halted due to stay-order placed on all electoral processes leading to the conduct of the Special Senatorial election, bye-elections as well as the National Referendum by the Supreme Court of Liberia.
Meanwhile, NEC’s training among other things captured financial reporting, processes leading to political parties registrations, compliance/abide to the Constitution of Liberia, the misuse of state properties by government officials in electioneering processes among others.
On the topic of financial reporting, the media was told to report candidates that will report on any candidate that will expend on campaign beyond its required ceiling as indicated by law.
For instance, candidate President should not exceed LRD2m, Vice Presidential candidate should not exceed LRD one million for Senate , spending should not exceed LRD 600,000 and Representative should not also exceed LRD400, 000.
The media thought how to go to probe and report anyone involved expending more than what is stipulated by law to spend in a given elections.
The media was told that it is required for after a given election for both winners and defeated candidates to report to NEC on the election performance. NEC says, the law provides that if a defeated failed to comply, he/she will be barred not to contest in any given elections; same would be applied to candidates that may have won.
“Absolutely no one is allowed to use government properties to run his/ her candidates. The law says, anyone caught using government’s vehicle for instance, must be made to pay in government’s account,” NEC warned.
NEC also restricts Corporate entities to fund individual candidates or political parties –noting that doing so, is a violation that can lead to disqualification when reported and verified.

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