…Fromoyan Outlines Multiple Causes To Weah; Says NEC Can’t Afford To Go LISGIS’s Census Fiasco Route
MONROVIA: James M. Fromoyan, former Chairman of the National Elections Commission (NEC), has catalogued to President George Manneh Weah, multiple reasons, why Madam Davidetta Browne-Lansanah should be sacked from her post as Chairperson of the National Elections Commission (NEC), ahead of 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections.
In letter to the Liberian President, Mr. Fromoyan said “I am aware of the fact that she holds a tenured position. But, a tenured office holder can be dismissed for a cause. In this case, there are justifiable causes for the dismissal of the NEC Chairperson.”
He identified the NEC’s failure to proclaim results of the 2020 National Referendum involving eight propositions. Credible institutions such as the Interfaith Council inter alia advised NEC against the holding of said Referendum, knowing that the Commission was ill-prepared in simultaneously holding Referendum alongside the Special Senatorial Election.
The second reason why Davidetta-Browne-Lansanah should be fired, according to Mr. Fromoyan is the “The twenty (20) Thermometers scheme. The NEC Chaired ripped the GOL of more than 182K (USD) of an overly inflated cost per thermometer on a rental basis. There was no need for twenty thermometer in those elections that involved more than 300 polling places spread in four counties: Bong, Bomi, Nimba and Grand Gedeh. The thermometer scheme was kept outside of the NEC procurement plan that was submitted to the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC). The PPCC would have raised the red flag on such an illegal deal. That astronomical amount was given to an IT firm owned and operated by the NCE Chairperson’s biological brother according to a Daily Observer report substantiated by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC), in a detailed and comprehensive investigation conducted by that institution.
“The third reason why I believe that the NEC Chairlady needs to leave such an integrity institution is the fact that she was hell bent on imposing a Biometric Voter Registration vendor, EKEMP on the country. The NEC Chair failed miserably to circumvent the rule of the PPCC. The PPCC check point saved the day as EKEMP was roundly exposed as a vendor that was the least qualified for consideration,” Fromoyan narrated to President Weah.
“Mr. President, you are fully aware that people who hold elective or appointed public offices ought to be servants, not lords of the people. Public office is not meant for profiteering or stealing. It is even disgusting and shameful when a member of an integrity institution, especially its head engages in such egregious criminal act. Keeping her on the job would be interpreted by many as a qui pro quo. That means you won’t dismiss her and she, in turn, will work to ensure your‘re-election’ in 2023 through fraudulent means,” the former NEC Chair told President Weah.
“Mr. President, I wish to endorse without reservation the recommendations contained in the press Statement issued by Senator Nyonblee Lawrence faction of the Liberty Party about three weeks ago. They include: The dismissal of Davidetta-Browne-Lansanah as Chairperson of NEC; GOL request for a five-member Counterpart Commissioners drawn from ECOWAS, the UN and the AU to join the Board of Commissioners to ensure efficiency, competence, and more importantly, the protection of the collective interest of Liberians in the face of a heavily pro-CDC Board of Commissioners unprecedented in Liberia; the acceptance of an International IT Expert to work in concert with NEC Data Center staff to guarantee smooth voter registration and safeguard the data processing of the 2023 elections results; and A request to ECOWAS to send an urgent Team of Electoral Experts to assess NEC state of readiness for the 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections. It is now abundantly clear that Biometric Voter Enrollment is not feasible at the moment. The delay in trying Biometric for the 2023 elections is due to the insistence of the NEC Chair on super imposing EKEMP on the country. Liberia has to revert to the Optical Marked Recognition (OMR) for the 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections in order to ensure peaceful, transparent and credible electoral process,” the letter added.
Fromoyan: “Your Excellency, Liberia is painfully living with a 2022 census fiasco due to incompetence, and poor management on the part of so LISGIS managers. The NEC cannot afford to go that route. We have to avoid cutting corners and work towards credible elections in 2023.”
“In order to show a good faith commitment to a credible, transparent, and fair 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections”, he told the Liberian president, “accepting the above recommendations will restore the confidence of the Liberian people in the electoral process.”
According to him, Liberia, like other emerging democratic states, worldwide, places its it hope in the electoral process under the Doctrine of Universal Suffrage (one person one vote), as a means of retaining or removing elected public office holders. “This is what makes an election so important in any democratic nation. The outcome of democratic elections, especially at home if the playing field is level with the process being Free, Fair, and Transparent.
Mr. Fromoyan cited as a case in point the recent Brazilian Presidential election with opposition leader, Lula De Silva victory over incumbent Bolsonnaro. He added that the expectations of Liberians both at home and in the Diaspora for 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections very abroad are very high and rightly so, and as such Liberia’s electoral management NEC, has to manifestly measure up to the challenges associated with the conduct of such crucial elections. But this seems not to be the case with the current Board of Commissioners at NEC.
Meanwhile, President George Weah has so far, not commented on Mr. Fromoyan’s Communication up to press time.