Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Moussa Faki Mahamat, urges all political stakeholders in Liberia to ensure a democratic, credible and peaceful electoral process, in conformity with the 2007 African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance, as the country heads to the polls on 10 October 2017.
The Chairperson of the Commission, noting the generally calm and peaceful campaign, calls on all Liberians, particularly political party leaders and their supporters, to approach the upcoming Presidential and House of Representative elections with the same spirit of tolerance. He urges the National Electoral Commission to ensure impartiality, transparency and fairness, in order to guarantee the legitimacy and acceptance of the election outcome.
In making this appeal, the Chairperson is mindful of the historical significance of these elections. They are indeed the third since the end of the two civil wars (1989-1997 and 1999-2003) in Liberia, and will mark the first truly democratic transfer of power in the country. These elections will be taking place against the backdrop of the country's recovery from the devastating consequences of the 2014-2015 Ebola Virus Disease epidemics.
The Chairperson reiterates the AU's commitment and support to this historic transition in Liberia aimed at entrenching a culture of democracy and peace, which is a pre-requisite for sustainable socio-economic development. In so doing, the AU will continue to work closely with the larger international community, including the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the United Nations. He seizes this opportunity to underline the key role played by ECOWAS and the UN, including through the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) in the stabilisation of the country.
It should be recalled that the AU has dispatched a team of election observers led by former Deputy Chairperson of the Commission, Erastus Mwencha, and comprising 14 long term and 50 short term observers. The team will comprehensively assess the electoral process compliance with national laws and international standards for democratic elections.