The Institute for Research and Democratic Development has recommended that the National Elections Commission be provided financial autonomy in order to stem the tide of political influence and broader space for the independence of the nation’s electoral house.
IREDD also recommended at a daylong conference that the National Elections Commission ensures adequate and long-term civic education be provided at the county and a process of decentralized recruitment be emphasized and the Liberian government prioritizes the establishment of an Independent Elections Complaints body that is divorced from the administrative aspect of the elections commission IREDD with financial support from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), has conducted a serious examination on the 2017 Presidential and Representatives elections on its challenges and prospects on the elections.
The conference which was held in Monrovia, on Friday, March 23, under the theme: Sharing Lessons Learnt: Liberia’s 2017 Legislative and Presidential Elections and Way Forward to improve further elections” indicates that The lack of a finalized, sanitized final registration roll (FRR) created some semblance of doubt about the authenticity of elections results and fueled speculations about partisan nature of the elections.
The conference also points out that minimal interagency coordination amongst actors involved either peripherally or directly with elections management created some degree of confusion and disorderliness for the elections.
The conference highlights that the limitation or inadequacy of logistics to address all phases of the elections from start to end affected predictability and contributed to a sense of external influence on elections results and the chaotic nature of the voter registrations process as well as the information surrounding the sourcing/contracting process also contributed towards voters’ skepticism.
The daylong conference revealed that there is improved political tolerance in the democratic participation and provided a profound and necessary test for the nation’s Judiciary Greatly improved the participation of youths in the democracy as established by the increased participation of young people in the democratic process either as direct participant or as surrogates The conference indicated that Liberians contributed immensely to a greater understanding and appreciation of the role of the judicial system in a democracy as well as a broadening of the general understanding of the electoral process and legal.