Liberia: Aggrieved Grand Cape Mount Senatorial Candidate Calls on Supporters to Remain Calm as Elections Commission Look into His Complaint
MONROVIA – Aggrieved Grand Cape Mount County Senator Victor Varney Watson has alarmed that the fraudulent conduct of electoral activities in Liberia will serve as a recipe for chaos and instability in the country in the future, if the necessary actions are not taken by the National Elections Commission (NEC) to amicably find remedies to the situation.
It can be recalled that Senator Watson filed a complaint at the National Elections Commission (NEC) after his political rival, Simeon Taylor, was declared the winner of the Grand Cape Mount County Senatorial election which took place across Liberia on December 8, 2020.
He called for a recount of the votes and complained that the electoral process was marred with multiple flaws including alleged double registration and voting, counting of invalid votes in favor of Senator-elect Taylor, and inflicting numbers on the records of account.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with FrontPage Africa over the week end, Senator Watson recalled that electoral malpractices negatively contributed to 14 years of civil unrest in Liberia.
He noted that many citizens who felt disenchanted over the infringement of their rights, caused havoc in the Liberian society.
“We fought 14 years’ war because people felt their rights were politically infringed on or their rights were taken away from them. Politically, they never had a say and it is their as a people to decide who represent them at every level. If that right is taken away from a group of people, obviously they stand to rebel”.
Conduit for peace
Senator Watson described the country’s National Elections Commission as a “conduit of peace”.
He maintained that as a “conduit: through which Liberia and its citizens can have lasting peace and stability, the NEC should, without fear or favor take decisions in the interest of safeguarding Liberia’s peace and fledgling democracy.
“An attempt to backslide from what they (NEC authorities) supposed to be doing, they are leaving group of Liberians with anger, insecurity and dissatisfaction”.
According to him, some people (who he did not name) are bent on allegedly infringing on the rights of Grand Cape Mount citizens who stone under the rain and sun to cast their ballots for the leaders of their choice in the December 8 senatorial election.
“We are urging the National Elections Commission to do everything in her own weak way to make sure that the people of Cape Mount sense justice. The reason for which the NEC was established is to give Liberians the opportunity to elect their leaders. What we are faced with is a situation where few hand-full of people have decided to ignore that policy or the reasons for which the NEC was established”.
He called on the NEC to “step her feet down and make sure that the right people are placed in the right places” to promote professionalism at the entity and help curtail or minimize the growing wave or concerns of alleged electoral malpractices in Liberia.
“These are jobs that need to be done by professional people. If professional people do these things, they will obviously be looking at ethical values; they will consider the integrity of the entity”.
Senator Watson noted that NEC authorities should take punitive measures against any staff or official who are engaged into fraudulent electoral acts to serve as deterrence to others who are bent on doing the same.
He added that the NEC will appear as “giving credence” to electoral flaws if their officials who instigated those acts are shielded just for the sake of protecting the entity’s image.
Trusting the NEC
Senator Watson, however, expressed trust and confidence that the NEC will do the right thing in the case involving him and Senator-elect Simeon Taylor, who was declared the winner of the just ended electoral process in Grand Cape Mount.
“They should not hand pick against the will of the people. Those fraudulent and corrupt acts should be stopped by the National Elections Commission; they should undo those kinds of actions. We plea that they should do whatever they can do in their own weak way; we trust and believe in them as an entity and we know that they are going to come out with the best results. We look forward to seeing justice prevailing for the people”.
Senator Watson urged his supporters to remain peaceful and wait for the outcome of the legal proceedings.
He said in the midst of barrage of provocations, his supporters should remain calm and avoid retaliating.
He, however, assured that he would not be used as a conduit or allowed anyone to use the situation to cause instability in Liberia.
Senator Watson further urged Liberians and others not to misconstrue his decision taken to institute legal action against the process, because his action is intended to seek justice for his constituents.
“We are urging our people to remain calm and peaceful. We want to respect the process to make sure that this country be peaceful. I want to further assure my supporters of justice. This is far above winning or losing; this is about justice for our people.”