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NEC declares Chea winner, but…

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The Board of Commissioners of the National Elections Commission (NEC) declared Cllr. Augustine S. Chea of the Coalition for Democratic Change CDC, as winner of the 20th November 2018 Senatorial By-election in Sinoe County, southeast Liberia, based on the polls results.

But the NEC says Cllr. Chea would not be certificated, pending outcome of ongoing investigated of complaint of alleged fraud filed by the opposition Liberia Coalition for Progress or CLP. The Board of Commissioners, through its Chairperson, Cllr. Jerome G. Korkoya says the decision follows an investigation conducted by its magisterial team in Greenville City, Sinoe County after its system detected that at polling place #1, with precinct Code 39054, Jarpuken Pulbic School, the number of votes recorded on the record of count exceeded the number of registered voters at that polling place.

The NEC Chairperson addressing a news conference Monday, 26 November explained that immediately following the detection that the number of votes recorded exceeded the number of registered voters, the polling place in electoral district number one was immediately quarantined, pending the outcome of an investigation.

Chairman Korkoya continues that during the investigation, including a recount of the votes in polling place #1, our NEC team discovered that used ballot papers in the box did not exceed the total number of 377 registered voters in the polling place.

However, he says it was discovered during the investigation that the Presiding Officer simply recorded votes for candidates that were more than the actual votes obtained by them.
That error was corrected immediately following the recount of votes, the NEC Boss told the news conference.

He says the decision of the BOC to declare Augustine S. Chea winner, who obtained the highest votes of 5, 839 out of a total of 16, 598 votes cast, was based on the results and in keeping with Section 2.9 (g) of the New Elections Laws of Liberia, but that Winner Chea will only be certificated after the disposition of the complaint filed by the opposition Coalition for Liberia Progress (CLP) which is currently under investigation.

According to him, the CLP has filed a 13-count complaint of electoral fraud and irregularities.
On Friday, 23 November 2018 the National Elections Commission announced the final result of the Representative by-election in District #13 Montserrado County, declaring Independent Candidate Edward Papay Flomo as winner.

–Editing by Jonathan Browne

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