Speaker Chambers Vows To Prevail At Supreme Court -Believes Elections Fraud Evidence Overwhelming -Receives media “Man of the Year Award” Accolade
MONROVIA: Barely days left for the 54th National Legislature in which he serves as Speaker of the House to give way to the 55th Legislature to take place, Soloken District Representative Bhofal Chambers is fighting tooth and nail to undo the October 10 elections results which he believes were rigged in his district in favor of his opponent.
Though the National Elections Commission has since discarded Speaker Chambers’ plea to squash the results, he has been catching his final breath at the Supreme Court where he says he stands a better chance to win the case.
On that last lap of his pursuit to claim his “victory”, Speaker Bhofal Chambers has said that he is very confident of getting justice at the Supreme Court of Liberia where he claims his mandate freely given to him by the people of Sodoken-Pleebo District will be restored.
According to him, “the pieces of evidence tendered are overwhelming”.
Speaking at the Capitol Building yesterday, Wednesday, January 3, 2024 during a press conference hosted in his conference room, Speaker Chambers who was declared loser of the election by the National Elections Elections(NEC), maintained that the electoral process was manipulated and compromised.
He said a gang up by some people who were bent to make sure he did not win the race.
While stressing that that there was some adulterations in some places where the election took place, he contends that there was no way he would have been declared loser and his rival, Anthony William, would not have been able to garner the minutest portion of the total votes cast during the election if the process was free and fair.
“I can tell you this much with no disrespect to the National Elections Commission: If the proper counting was done, my opponent wouldn’t have gotten 30% of the votes, because we heard people were to throw us in the court and because they knew what was in the district, that the people were overwhelmingly ready to vote for me. So they did all kinds of things to derail the process against us,” he said at the press conference.
“They truncated the process,” he continued. “They made some compromises and names were called. People said they saw some of the people and in fact there was a gentleman in Pleebo; they took him where I was stopping at my residence because my place is being refurbished. I was in a guest house and a gentleman came in and pleaded with us. People were there and discussion went on.
“And even those persons who were put in position to regulate issues about voting even said they stuffed ballots; they did the dirty work and they have to play reserve for my opponent. There were disturbances, violence ensured, people got hurt, all the CDC poll watchers were pulled out of the premises.”
Speaker Chambers spoke authoritatively about facts available to him on how he was pushed out of winning the race and how so many things happened during the process. He also explained how he had to get in touch with one of the commissioners at NEC when the election magistrate in Maryland County could not stamp her authority to fully discharge her functions to the extent of allowing ballots to be taken to Harper for counting.
He said it was strange that a such practice of taking ballots from one district to be counted in another district took place and there was nothing done to correct the irregularities and malpractices.
The House Speaker stated emphatically that what was declared as the outcome of the contest was not what they people voted for and should not be allowed to stand.
“So all these things in my mind were not conducive for democracy,” he noted. “People were saying, ‘Bhofal is the speaker; he should be able to use his power’. But no, we believe in democratic governance. So things could happen but the people’s franchise should be respected.”
He continued: “If people went there to act disorderly, it was not proper, and I want to thank the security people because they stood their ground when those who worked against the will of the people even decided to compromise the area in question.
“It was so shameful and if we want to move the country forward, Liberians should work together in harmony. Again, I will tell you that there is nobody, who is better than the other and there are some others who wanted to cause confusion.”
Dr. Chambers said Liberians should shun what he called the narcissistic attitude where some people believe they are above others to get more from the country in terms of leadership, privileged opportunities and benefits forgetting to know that “we are all mortals and God is the judge, faithful and just”.
“What we want is a better Liberia,” he cried out. “Anyone who has the ability and prowess to run this country, we will give them the support but the people’s desire should not be thwarted by anybody by any means. This is not a matter of pecuniary dispensation, it is not a fight for money.
“This country has so much to produce because it is fertile and I think we need to work together to become prosperous, to be just, to become equal so that our responsibility can match our rights, Liberia belongs to all of us and let people not be carried away.
“Do away with people who have narcissistic behavior, people who believe they are the only humans better than others”, Speaker Chambers said.
He said he was very confident of victory at the Supreme Court with what he and his lawyers presented before the Apex Court after his objection to the outcome of election was first denied by the Hearing Officer at NEC and then the full Board of Commissioners.
The decision at the Supreme Court will be the final end to his litigation, meaning Anthony Williams who was declared winner and whose victory was upheld by both the hearing officer and the Board of Commissioner will be allowed to be sworn in as the next representative of Sodoken-Pleebo District replacing Speaker Chambers at the ensuing 55th National legislature.
“Yes, as I said before if the Supreme Court rules today, I am sure of victory and I will be a candidate for the Speakership of the 55th national legislature,” Chambers spoke confidently.
He also used the occasion to make clarifications on what he said about the aspiration of his deputy, Cllr. Fonati J. Koffa to become Speaker of the 55th national legislature which sparked war of words between the two top leaders of the House of Representatives.
Chambers said in as much as his statement was in good faith to protect the sanctity of good governance since those who get elected to positions of trust must faithfully discharge them for the benefit of the people, he was taken out of context and there was an unnecessary distraction from the main thrust of his message.
“I believe that not long ago, a press conference was held and I heard my name to the effect where it was stated that I, Bhofal Chambers, asked my deputy about his link with firestone, and it was also said I said he is a lawyer of HPX and ArcelorMittal. Also he said I linked him to LPRC.
“Those were far from what I said. I said it was of common knowledge or perceived or alleged that the honorable deputy speaker Koffa had links with companies and that which were named. I stand to be corrected, but I also called Honorable Koffa in my office to give him some pieces of advice about his role as a lawmaker not even as a deputy speaker.
“For the job I do, he is not the character for the moment except he becomes changed person, and I cannot sit here to play the game of a proverbial ostrich, putting my head in the sand, do things as they happen because nobody sees me. It is unfair. Imagine if he was the quality of a deputy speaker in the institution where we all make sacrifices; as my case is being adjudicated, the party itself would not have come up to say that he is a candidate to put out there.”
Chambers, who is credited with maintaining stability in the 54th Legislature as well as a cordial relationship between the other branches of government, said he had nothing personal against Deputy Speaker Kofa but “the right thing must be done as Liberia is the only country we all have”.
Meanwhile, an honoring program which preceded the press conference was held with an award from the Eyes of the Globe Media Group which named Speaker Chambers as “Man of the Year” for his “outstanding contributions to the nation and his unwavering dedication to selfless leadership”.
According to Mr. Paul Bordoe, Managing Publisher, who spoke and presented the certificate of honor on behalf of his institution, Speaker Bhofal Chambers has, since assuming office on January 15, 2018, exemplified patriotism and played a pivotal role in steering the 54th Legislature with exceptional leadership skills.
Mr. Bordoe commended Speaker Chambers for building a strong profile and maintaining stability within the Legislature throughout the years.
Highlighting the humanitarian endeavors of the speaker, Mr. Bordoe acknowledged Speaker Chambers’ commitment to paying medical bills for numerous individuals and supporting students in their pursuit of education abroad.
He emphasized the speaker’s role as a compassionate leader who treats everyone with equality and respect.
Expressing his gratitude for the prestigious honor, Speaker Bhofal Chambers promised to remain humble in his ongoing service to the public.
He acknowledged the collective effort of the Legislature and reaffirmed his commitment to continue working tirelessly