Ahead of December 8: ECC to Deploy Election Observers in 73 Electoral Districts Across Liberia

Oscar Bloh, ECC Charman

The Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC) will be deploying 927 domestic elections observers in all 73 electoral districts across the country on December 8, 2020 Special Senatorial Elections and National Referendum to improve electoral outcomes.

Election Day observation methodology

The ECC’s 984 observes are systematically deployed as Rapid Response Observers. The Rapid Response Observers are deployed based on a proportional distribution by districts. This means that the proportion of polling stations observed by Rapid Response Observers in each district and county closely matches the overall percentage of polling stations in each district and county. This proportional deployment enables the ECC to comment on the process nationally, drawing on data points from every district of the country.

The deployed observers were trained to use a unique observation checklist that covers all the procedures of polling and counting. They would send observation reports in real time via coded text messages to a sophisticated database system. The ECC has also established a national Data Information Center (DIC) in Monrovia with 30 highly trained data clerks starting from Tuesday December 8, 2020 at 7:00 am. These 30 data clerks at the data center will be working on collecting and analyzing the observation data reported from the field regularly and will produce a mid-day report on the opening and set up of polling places, including the final outcome of the elections.

ECC Condemns Pre-Election Violence

The Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC) is deeply concerned about pre-election violence in Porkpar District, Grand Cape Mount County leading to the burning of vehicles belonging to the CPP Senatorial candidate, Mr. Simeon Taylor and a house belonging to the sitting representative. The ECC notes that the failure of the Ministry of Justice and the Liberia National Police to take stern action on perpetrators of electoral violence irrespective of their political affiliation tend to sanction impunity and indirectly grant these political followers the license to act.  While we applaud the statement issued by the President, His Excellency, George M. Weah condemning the violence and stating his government will not condone such – we urge the President to go beyond condemnation and instruct the Ministry of Justice and the Liberia National Police to investigate and prosecute all those involved as a sign of good leadership.

The challenge with these sorts of incidents is that they continue to thrive in the absence of punishment and strong political will to denounce them.

The ECC similarly commends the prompt joint statement on election violence by diplomatic missions and urges these missions to leverage on their collective influence to call for more stringent actions against political actors whose direct actions and inactions leads to violence and destabilizes the state.

About the ECC:

The Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC) is a civil society platform, comprising several organizations: Center for Democratic Governance (CDG); Center for Media Studies and Peace Building (CEMESP); Institute for Research and Democratic Development (IREDD); Naymote Partners for Democratic Development; West Africa Network for Peace Building (WANEP), and the Women’s NGO Secretariat of Liberia (WONGOSOL). The ECC is the largest civil society platform that observes elections in Liberia. It works in partnership with the National Democratic Institute with support from the USAID.

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