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NEC launches biometric voters feasibility studies

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The National Elections Commission (NEC) has officially launched the biometric voters registration feasibility studies in the country. Addressing a press conference, NEC Chairperson Madam Davidetta Brown – Lansanah told reporters Monday, 7 June 2021 that the commission in partnership with UNDP and Ecowas, has begun the feasibility studies of voters’ biometric registration.

She noted that the introduction of biometric voters’ registration globally has had some advantages, among them the possibility of enhancing voters’ confidence and increasing integrity, accuracy and transparency of the electoral process.

“Following this launch, we are hoping that the potential adoption of the biometric voters registration in Liberia can bring greater efficiency in data capture and analysis, and increasing security, improving the conduct of future elections,” Madam Brown – Lansanah said.

On behalf of the Board of the NEC, Madam Brown – Lansanah told reporters that NEC along with UNDP and Ecowas technical support is undertaking a comprehensive feasibility study for a potential introduction of new technology – the biometric voters registration in election management in Liberia.

She indicated that in the interest of transparency and national ownership, the team will meet with a broad spectrum of politicians here in Liberia for their inputs in this exercise.

According to her, the feasibility studies will do a comprehensive analysis of the potential of the introduction of new technologies such as biometric voters’ registration in the electoral process ahead of the 2023 elections and beyond.

Ms. Brown – Lansanah added that the studies will strongly consider the effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability of various technologies and advise the NEC appropriately.According to her, given the experience gained from the cleaning of the voters roll, the studies will increase public confidence in the voters roll.

“These types of solutions are becoming more popular globally, but each nation has its own strength and limitations when it comes to conducting technological solutions, and these need to be considered more consciously,” the NEC boss continued.She said Liberia’s position is by no means unique, noting that there’s a need to carefully assess how to adapt any new technology before making any kind of commitment.

“This feasibility study we are launching today will assess Liberia’s ability to initially adapt new technologies,” she said.”As we look forward to 2023, this is just one way in which the NEC can continue to improve its performance to benefit every voters,” Madam Brown – Lansanah indicated.

Speaking on behalf of the Ecowas Technical Support team, the head of Ecowas Radio Ms. Eva Flomo said the regional body has been collaborating with UNDP in ensuring that there is a free, fair and transparent election in Liberia.

“We provided support in 2017, during that process the major issues that came out were the cleaning of the voters roll,” she said, adding that Ecowas along with UNDP again was pleased in providing support to the cleaning of the voters roll exercise, adding credibility to to the electoral process.

By Lewis S. Teh–Edited by Winston W. Parley

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