Monrovia – The Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) has filed a writ of mandamus with the Supreme Court Chamber Justice for the issuance of an alternative writ to compel the National Elections Commission (NEC) and the government of Liberia to conduct a full cleaning of the voters roll to prevent violence ahead of the December 8, 2020 senatorial midterm and by-elections across the country.
The writ of mandamus under the Liberian law is a special proceeding to obtain a writ requiring the respondent to perform an official duty. The writ is not a preventive remedy, but is essentially a coercive writ, one that commands performance.
The CPP is, among other things, seeking for the high court to mandate the NEC to comply with that honorable court judgment in the case involving the commission verse the late political leader of Liberty Party (LP) and intervening parties Unity Party (UP) and Alternative National Congress (ANC), comply with the June 5, 2020 Joint Resolution of the Legislature to clean the 2017 voters roll and recommendations within the ECOWAS Team Report.
The opposition group is further pleading with the honorable Court to descend on NEC to conduct a transparent full and comprehensive cleanup of the 2017 voters roll (FFR) in close collaboration with political parties within a time frame to be determined by the Supreme Court.
In a twenty-nine count petition, CPP holds that cleaning-up the Voter Roll is critical to Liberia’s peace and stability and that it will obtain relief of no other plain as a creditable Voters’ Roll is an indispensable foundation for free, fair, and transparent elections and the exercise of democratic governance .
The CPP maintains in their complain that the conduct of the respondents in this circumstances present a clear danger as it risks throwing the Country to violence and instability that could be avoided if the NEC were to conduct a transparent, full and comprehensive cleanup of the 2017 Voters Roll in close collaboration with political parties.
CPP further emphasized that when the voters roll is deliberately compromised through misfeasance, nonfeasance and malfeasance by the constitutional and statutory body responsible for elections as in this case, the constitution is deliberately prevented, and the wholesome objectives and sacred underpinnings of our constitution and representative form of government is undermined.
The petitioners quoted Chapter 1, Article 1 of the 1986 constitution which states “All power is inherent in the people. All free governments are instituted by their authority and for their benefit and they have the right to alter and reform the same when their safety and happiness so require. In order to ensure democratic government which responds to the wishes of the governed, the people shall have the right at such period, and in such manner as provided for under this constitution, to cause their public servant to leave office and to fill vacancies by regular elections and appointments.”
This is not the first time that the NEC is being dragged to the high court on the issue of VR (FFR) cleaning. Following the first round of voting in 2017, the Commission was taken to court by the late Charles Brumskine, Political Leader of the Liberty Party over allegation of fraud and ill-regularities cause by the voters roll, something that was acknowledge by the supreme court at the time thus ordering the elections house to conduct a full clean-up of the voters roll to ensure trust and credibility in the process, a mandate that has not been fully adhered to.