Three international peacekeeping organizations here including ECOWAS, AU and UNMIL are jointly cautioning Liberia’s three branches of government to coordinate and find an immediate amicable solution to an impeachment plan being advanced by lawmakers against three justices of the Supreme Court.
“While fully respecting the sovereignty of Liberia and its institutions, the AULOL, ECOWAS and UNMIL call upon the Legislative, Judicial and Executive branches of Government to work in a coordinated and mutually supportive way and to spare no effort in finding an amicable and immediate solution to this dispute..,,” the peacekeepers said in a joint statement issued Wednesday, 16 August.
The African Union Liaison Office in Liberia (AULOL), the Office of the Special Representative of the President of the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia and the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) have jointly acknowledge that over the past 13 years since the end of civil war, Liberia has made tremendous strides in strengthening its institutions and in building a strong and vibrant democracy.
But they are now asking Liberian authorities at these three branches of government to act in coordination in the interest of all the Liberian people who are looking forward to peaceful elections in a violence-free atmosphere.
Three justices are being pursued with impeachment by lawmakers here at a time presidential and representatives candidates look to the Supreme Court for decision in elections – related matters.
There are some 20 presidential candidates in addition to hundreds of candidates that are contesting for 73 seats at the House of Representatives. In the wake of emerging constitutional crisis, the peacekeeping organizations remind all branches and institutions of Government here to respect the letters and spirit of the Constitution and abide by the laws of the Republic of Liberia in compliance with international best practices and promotion of good governance.
They are asking the various branches of government to spare no effort in finding an amicable and immediate solution to this dispute in the interest of all the Liberians.They are clear that they note with grave concern the tensions between the Legislature and the Judiciary over attempts to initiate impeachment proceedings by the House of Representatives against three Supreme Court Justices.
They also cite the ‘stay order’ placed against the impeachment proceedings by the Supreme Court, as well as the press statement from the Executive Mansion on this matter.
“We call upon all stakeholders to prioritize national interest as the country moves toward the final phase of peaceful, fair, participatory and transparent elections, and the transition to a new Government in 2018,” the organizations say.
They also request all political parties to reaffirm their love of country and their commitment to violence-free elections as agreed in the Farmington River Declaration. “We assure all Liberians of our continuous support towards maintaining stability, ensuring sustainable peace and facilitating development in Liberia,” they note in a joint statement.
They conclude that they will continue to follow developments closely and support all efforts aimed at de-escalating the situation.