The European Union (EU) has deployed an Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) to Liberia to observe the presidential and representatives elections scheduled for this October.
The EU announced the deployment of a 20 long-term observers team here on Thursday, 14 September, adding that these elections are a historical moment for Liberia. The EU EOM will monitor the process without interfering or supervising, according to the EU.
EU EOM Deputy Chief Observer Alessandro Parziale told a press conference in Monrovia Thursday that he hopes that team of analysts and observers will contribute with impartial and objective assessments to a democratic transition in Liberia.
The group of experts consists of election, political, legal, human rights and gender, finance, media and data analysts.
The EU says the group of 20 long-term observers which joined the EU EOM on 10 September, was due to be deployed Thursday to different parts of Liberia to follow the electoral preparations and campaigns.
The EU Election Observers come from 20 different Member States of the European Union. Additional 34 short-term observers will be deployed throughout the country together with locally recruited short-term observers.
“The EU EOM will assess the elections according to Liberia’s national law and the international commitments it has made regarding elections,” Deputy Chief Observer Parziale says.
He explains that the Mission will focus on the entire electoral process, including the legal framework, electoral administration, voter registration, nominations, campaigning, the conduct of the media, voting and counting, the tally of results and dispute resolution mechanisms.
Mr. Parziale notes that on 4 September, the team met with National Elections Commission (NEC’s) Chairman Cllr. Jerome George Korkoya and his deputies and launched the Mission officially here.
According to him, the EU EOM has since then had several meetings with Liberian authorities and groups including journalists and civil society organizations as well as the Delegation of the European Union to Liberia.
He says all EU EOM observers are bound by a code of conduct, which requires strict neutrality and non-interference.
The EU EOM says it undertakes its work in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, adding that it will publish its initial findings in a preliminary statement which will be presented in a press conference shortly after Election Day.
A Final Report with recommendations to the public will be presented at a later stage.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor–Edited by Winston W. Parley.