NEC Drags To Court For Not Preforming Constitutional Duty
Bong County Representative Aspirant and the Vice President for student affairs of the Bong County Technical College (BCTC), James K. Saybay, has issued a petition for a Writ of Mandamus through his lawyer J. Laveli Supuwood, to the Associate Justice in Chamber, Joseph Nagbe to compel National Election Commission (NEC) preform its a constitutional duty.
Aspirant Saybay lawyer, Supuwood pray to the Court to grant their petition and mandating NEC to cause a by-election to be held in District #2, Bong County, Republic of Liberia.
Cllr. Supuwood pleaded before Justice Nagbe that the Court should grant them such other relief as the Honorable Court may deem just and equitable.
Cllr. Supuwood, maintains article 77(b) “All elections shall be by secret ballot as may be determined by that elections commission and every Liberian citizen not less than 18 years of age, shall have the right to be registered as a voter and to vote in public elections and referenda under this constitution. The Legislature shall enact laws indicating the category of Liberians who shall not form or become members of political parties”.
He said his client Aspirant Saybay and the citizens of District #2 of Bong County have the right to participate freely in the democratic political process of the Republic and be represented in the national House of Representatives.
Cllr. Supuwood urged that NEC is under a legal duty to ensure the citizens of District #2 Bong County aforesaid freely exercise their rights.
Cllr. Supuwood explained that during 2020, senatorial elections, Hon. Prince Moye who served as a member of the House of Representatives from that District won the senatorial election and is now serving as a member of the Liberian Senate, thereby creating a vacancy in the House of Representatives.
Aspirant Saybay’s lawyer said the NEC should have conducted a by-election within ninety days after the declaration of the vacancy by the presiding officer of the House of Representatives.
Cllr. Supuwood narrated that from December 8, 2020, when the midterm senatorial elections were held to the filing of the petition, that is May 31, 2021, about the 120 days allowed by law, yet there is no showing of any evidence of attempts to conduct the necessary by-election.
Cllr Supuwood revealed to the Court that NEC failure to timely conduct by-election in the aforesaid District #2, Bong County, the right to representation in the House of Representative in violation of Article 37, of the constitution which states that: “In the event of a vacancy in the Legislature caused by death, resignation, expulsion or otherwise, the presiding officer shall within 30 days notify the Elections Commission thereof. The Election Commission shall not later than 90 days thereafter cause a by-election to hold”.