RECENTLY, IT WAS announced that the National Elections Commission (NEC) filed a petition before the Civil Law Court for the Revocation of the Registration and Accreditation of 20 Registered Political parties in Liberia.
ACCORDING TO THE Petition, the political parties violated Articles 83(d) and 79 (c)(i) of the 1986 Constitution of Liberia as well as Part II Chapter IV of the Guidelines Relating to the Registration of Political Parties and Independent Candidates.
NEC HAS PUT out an argument quoting Article 83(d) of the Constitution of Liberia which the commission says makes it mandatory that every political party in Liberia shall on September 1, of each year, publish and submit to the NEC detailed statements of assets and liabilities.
THE COMMISSION ARGUED that part II, Chapter IV of the Guidelines Relating to the Registration of Political Parties and Independent Candidates mandates that “each political party shall maintain an updated bank account with a balance not less than US$10,000 or its equivalence in Liberian Dollars.
NEC SAYS THESE political parties have refused to honor the constitutional provisions and therefore, it was prudent to take them to court instead of arbitrarily closing their headquarters. With these allegations by NEC; the ball is now in the court of the accused parties to exonerate themselves in a court of competent jurisdiction.
WE WELCOME THE lawsuit against these political parties by NEC because this is completely a due process for political parties to be given the opportunity to defend themselves in the Civil Law Court.
WE ARE LAUDING the action by the Commission not because we are against the parties but because NEC did not take the law into its own hands but sought for due process against these parties. In other words, our major concern is the respect for the rule of law which NEC did in this case.
IN THE SAME vein, we call on all political parties to use the due process as a means of addressing their concerns either with the Commission or with other parties and individuals whenever confusion arises. In all of our undertakings, let the rule of law prevail because Liberia is a country of law and not men.
THE INTERESTING THING is that these political parties will have the opportunity to defend themselves against the Commission’s allegation without intimidation or harassment as was done in the past. This is indeed a manifestation of a new political dispensation where political parties and the Elections Commission will engage each other in a competent court of jurisdiction. AND THAT IS WHY WE WELCOME THE DUE PROCESS.