By Alva M. Wolokolie
The group that broke away few years ago from the main opposition Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) named and styled the Alternative National Congress (ANC) has been finally accredited by the National Elections Commission (NEC) as a registered political party in the country.
This means that the ANC has met all basic requirements as provided for in the electoral law and the constitution of Liberia to operate as any other political parties in the country.
At the program marking the official accreditation of the ANC yesterday at the James M. Fromayan Conference Hall, the Co-Chairman of NEC Cllr. Sarah M. Toe cautioned members and officials of the party from the outset to desist in activities that will cause internal strife and division.
“We laud your efforts in having undertaken what must have been a truly arduous task in transforming the concept of a new political party to reality. We understand that the efforts expended by yourselves to bring your dream to fruition must have been at times very frustrating. However, all of the hard work has paid off and today we see the result of it. The Alternative National Congress has officially become a registered political party today,” Cllr. Toe said.
Cllr. Toe, who is also the Acting Chairman of NEC wants the party to stay true to the party’s ideals and look to and abide by its own constitution which she believes would avoid many of the problems that the NEC sees occurring with other parties.
The Acting NEC boss assured the ANC that the Commission has the resources to effectively work with them as a party. She said that one medium to start up with as a registered party is the Inter Party Consultative Committee (IPCC) which is a link between the NEC and the political parties.
“I strongly urge you to participate in these meetings because they are a source of information gathering and idea sharing. The goal of the IPCC is to ensure that there is continuous dialogue between all stakeholders so that elections are seen to be free and fair by all involved.
In response to the statement of accreditation, the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of ANC Lafayette E.O. Gould lauded the NEC family for working with the NEC to bring the party’s dream to a reality.
Mr. Gould described the accreditation as a historic day for the people of Liberia and commended all men and women who have worked tirelessly about a year ago to plan and organize what is now referred to as ANC.
The ANC has the alternative for the Liberian people because the party will do everything legally to win the 2017 elections. Gould assured the Commission that ANC will have its standard bearer but the process to have such person will be done in a democratic manner.
Mr. Gould however used the occasion to call on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to veto the sustainability political party bill that has been passed by the 53rd National Legislature. He described the introduction of the bill as untimely because the Liberian people need more money to build schools, roads, hospitals, to provide electricity, safe drinking water and not money to support political parties.