On October 18, 2016, the Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC), from her offices in Monrovia, issued a release on the publication of political parties’ financial statements as well as a new threshold for the pending election.
ECC CAUTIONS (NEC) TO COMPEL POLITICAL PARTIES to PUBLISH THEIR FINANCIAL STATEMENTS; ALSO CALLS ON THE LIBERIAN NATIONAL LEGISLATURE TO SET A NEW THRESHOLD FOR THE 2017 REPRESENTATIVE AND PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS.
MONROVIA, LIBERIA: –The Elections Coordinating Committee, (ECC), has observed with concern non-compliance in certain provisions of the Liberian Constitution by some political parties and independent candidates who are required by the Liberian Constitution (Article 83 d) to publish and submit to the National Elections Commission detailed statements of assets and liabilities by September 1 of each year.
While it may be true that some political parties have submitted financial statements to NEC, the Constitutional provision cited above dictates that the report filed with NEC must be published to satisfy both conditions of publishing and submitting. The ECC also wants to commend parties that have made their financial report public.
The ECC is also deeply concern that no decision has been reached between the NEC and the National Legislature on setting a new threshold to reapportion districts for the 2017 elections in keeping with Article 80 (d) and (e). The ECC wishes to point out that in 2010, constituencies were not apportioned based on the 2008 census report. Rather, the Legislature through a joint resolution in 2010, instructed NEC to set a special threshold, thus adding nine (9) additional seats to the existing 64 seats from the 2005 elections. This joint resolution which contravened Article 80 (d) and (e) has expired because it was dealing with the 2011 election, and therefore this same formula cannot be used for the 2017 election.
In furtherance of the above observation, the ECC wishes to advance the following recommendations:
- That NEC compels all political parties who have not published their financial statements to do so in compliance with Article 83 (d) of the Constitution.
- That NEC should name all political parties who have failed to comply with the above provisions.
- That under our democratic system, representation is not based on registered voters, rather on population as determined by a census report. In view of the above, the ECC calls on the Legislature to convene a special session to set a new threshold based on the 2008 census report before the start of the voter registration process.
- As the NEC prepares to launch the National Civic and Voters Education, the ECC calls on the Liberian Government to provide the necessary financial support to ensure that the process is fully implemented so that citizens can turn out to register.
The elections work of the ECC is conducted in partnership with the National Democratic Institute (NDI) with support from USAID.
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Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC) is a non-partisan network of civil society organizations that monitors, documents, and reports on election issues to promote transparency and accountability in Liberia and strengthen the democratic process.
Download the PDF of this press release here: October_18_release