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Stop them!

-International Justice Group writes NEC

The International Justice Group (IJG) has officially written the National Elections Commission (NEC) requesting it to stop six current and former officials from contesting in the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.

In the communication dated 3 November 2022, IJG named Liberia’s former Passport Director Andrew Wonplo; Grand Cape Mount County Senator Varney G Sherman; and Solicitor General Cllr. Saymah Syrenius Cephus.

It also listed former National Port Authority Managing Director Bill Twehway; President George Manneh Weah’s former Minister of State Nathaniel F. McGill; and Nimba County Senator Prince Y. Johnson.

The United States government has sanctioned Cephus, Twehway, and McGill for corruption. Earlier, it also sanctioned Senators Johnson and Sherman.

The IJG has requested the NEC to notify it at the point of application or nomination of the sanctioned officials to enable the international advocacy group to proffer a timely objection to their candidacy for being against public policy and injurious to the public interest objectives of the state and the best interest of the Liberian people. 

“The personalities in reference are Andrew Wonplo, Varney G. Sherman, Cyrinius Cephus, Bill Twehway, Nathaniel F. McGill, and Prince Y. Johnson,” the communication reads.

It further requests that any other individuals or entities publicly designated for sanctions in the future, a notice be kindly provided to the IJG at the time of nomination or application so that a timely objection to them can be made.

The communication noted the group’s intention to object to the candidature of the sanctioned individuals and others to follow later in the ensuing 2023 legislative and presidential elections, in the future for various forms of transgressions against the public interest and morality.

IJG cited acts of public corruption, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and egregious violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws, whether listed or not in The Final Reports of The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia (TRC).

“Although the Global Magnitsky Act Sanctions are not a criminal conviction, it is a formal condemnation and rebuke of an individual who has been investigated by the US Government and deemed to have sufficient evidence of corruption and/or human rights violations to justify a serious sanction,” the communication said. 

The group argued that the US government, without any doubt, thoroughly investigates every allegation of corruption and human rights violations(s) before formally sanctioning anyone. 

As a result, it said the US government makes it clear that no one can conduct business transactions with those who have been sanctioned. 

“Consequently, as a result of our historical ties, the Government of Liberia relies on heavily on the financial and political support of the US government, so it seems inconceivable that a government official, either elected or appointed who has been sanctioned would be eligible to engage in any government business with the US government,” IJG said. 


The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).

One Comment

  1. Jerome Verdier, there are no violations of Liberian laws that inhibit liabilities to the sanctioned individuals political pursuasions!

    Neirher the government of Liberia nor the NEC is satutorily obliged to subscribe to your socalled IJG’s demand!

    Liberia is a soveirgn indepedent nation that is not a US Trusteeship that should offsucate its laws for the ego of a crumbling naked emporer!

    US Magnisty Sanctions are non- prosecutorially due processed nor do they have the binding effects in cross-jurisdictions!

    Liberian citizens who have broken no Liberian laws but are under US Manitsky sanctions, have their full rights under Liberian laws !

    Your aspiration for a constitutional crisis for an interim government that should repisition your lofty years, has failed !

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