NEC Wants Massive Turnout in Lofa By-Election -As Pres. Weah Declares June 28 National Holiday in Lofa
The Chairperson of the National Elections Commission, Davidetta Browne Lansanah, is calling on all registered voters in Lofa County to turn out in their numbers and vote in the Tuesday, June 28, 2022 senatorial by-election.
According to Chairperson Lansannah, a total of 187, 775 registered Liberian voters across Lofa County will go to the polls to exercise their franchise to vote for a Senator in the County on 28 June 2022.
Of this number, there are 96,829 female voters and 90,946 male voters in the Lofa County senatorial by-election, which Chairperson Lansannah said will be administered Tuesday, 28 June 2022 by the Commission.
“I am calling on our mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers who are registered voters in Lofa County to turnout in your numbers to the place where you registered and vote on 28 June in the Senatorial by-election in Lofa county. All registered voters are permitted to vote only once using a valid Voter Registration Card at the center where they register to vote. Liberians, please note that without a valid voter registration card you will not be allowed to vote,” Chairperson Lansannah said in a motivational speech to the voters of Lofa County.
Continuing, the NEC boss called on the voters to observe all COVID-related health protocols as they converge to cast their ballots.
“Please observe all COVID health protocols as instructed by the Ministry of Health. We say please come with your face mask, hand sanitizer and most of all keep your social distance, Chairperson Lansannah stated.
National Holiday for Lofa County
Meanwhile, in line with his Constitutional obligation, President George M. Weah has by proclamation declared Tuesday, June 28, 2022 as Lofa County By-Election Day to be observed as a Public Holiday only in Lofa County in order to hold the By-Election created in the Senate as a result of the December 8, 2020 Midterm Senatorial Election.
According to a Friday, June 24, 2022 Press Release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Lofa County electoral process should be observed under strict adherence to prescribed COVID-19 health protocols.
“The Proclamation calls on citizens and foreign residents within Lofa County to respect, specifically this Public Holiday,” the release said, directing government offices, business houses, private and public institutions of learning and marketplaces in Lofa County to be closed on that day, from six o’ clock ante meridian to six o’ clock post meridian, with the exception of hospitals and other medical institutions.
The Proclamation further indicated that the Government of the Republic of Liberia is desirous of ensuring the unhindered movement of all eligible voters, granting unto them the opportunity to exercise their constitutional franchise in Lofa County in a peaceful manner on the day of election.
The Senatorial By-Election became necessary as a result of the final judgment of the Honorable Supreme Court, arising from the Bill of Information that incapacitated the presumptive winner, Mr. Brownie J. Samukai, from serving as the Senator of Lofa County, thereby creating the vacancy for the Lofa County seat in the Liberian Senate.
The Proclamation recounted that the National Elections Commission (NEC) sent a communication dated May 3, 2022, informing the Liberian Senate that “the NEC does not believe it will be feasible to conduct the Lofa County Senatorial By-Election on May 10, 2022, due to ongoing legal process between the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) versus the All Liberian Party (ALP) and the Unity Party (UP), and the participation of the relevant aspirants in this by-election” thus automatically postponing said by-election.
In the exercise of its Legislative powers, the Legislature adopted a Joint Resolution, setting a New Date for the conduct of the By-Election for the Lofa County Senatorial Seat. Joint Resolution LEG-001/2022 was adopted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 54th Legislature of the Republic of Liberia setting a New Date for the Conduct of the By-Election for Lofa County Senatorial Seat on the Fourth Tuesday of June, same being 28th, 2022, and published into handbills by Authority of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on June 17, 2022, the Proclamation added further.
In fulfillment of Article 37 of the Constitution of the Republic of Liberia, the Presiding Officer of the Liberian Senate duly notified the National Elections Commission (NEC), about the existence of the vacancy on February 16, 2022, the Proclamation noted.
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