Elected senators and their defeated colleagues protesting against election outcomes declared by the National Elections Commission are expected to appear before Chambers Justice Phillip A.Z. Banks, III, at the Supreme Court this Friday, January 16, 2015.
This paper is not certain whether or not the appearance of the party litigants, including the NEC is intended to get the Justice’s decision on matters already heard in the past weeks, but a hint by a court officer suggests that the court has assigned hearings in all election-related complaints before it for Friday at 2pm.
The NEC did not certificate three elected senators due to writs of prohibitions coming from the Supreme Court after their contenders who were declared defeated candidates in the December 20, 2014 vote separately protested their certification because complaints against the winners had not been conclusively dealt with.
Grand Cape Mount County’s Varney Sherman, Bomi’s Morris Saytumah and Margibi’s James Tononlah are three senators-elect yet to be certificated, while protests were also filed against some certificated senators as well.
Lawyers for the NEC and winning candidates from the rulling Unity Party had argued that the petitioners did not exhaust the available remedy at the NEC before going to the Supreme Court of Liberia.
Former River Gee County Senator Fred D. Cherue, arguing in favor of the need to certificate winning candidates, had said that the certification of candidates by NEC was the confirmation of the results announced.
He, therefore, contended that prohibition could not be sustained in the case in point because, according to him, the “National Elections Commission had proceeded in no wrong way,” and it did not byepass any rules for which it should be prohibited.
Counsels for the three defeated candidates, including Bomi’s Laha Lasana, Margibi’s Ansu Sonnie and Grand Cape Mount County’s Fody Kromah had petitioned the Supreme Court for an injunction against the certification of senators-elect Cllr. Sherman, Mr. Tononlah and Mr. Saytumah.
They were protesting against results declaring the three, winners over them when the NEC had not ruled into complaints against the results that favoured their colleagues.