Grand Bassa County Representative Gabriel Buchanan Smith has claimed huge irregularities in the ongoing voters’ registration exercise, something he has described as troubling signs on the walls that could create serious trouble if nothing is done.
Speaking to this paper Thursday February 23, at his Capitol Building office in Monrovia, Rep. Smith said the trucking of voters from point to another and the broad day violation of the Code of Conduct law could lead the country to another mess that may not be repaired soon.
Smith also voiced concern over an earlier request made by the National Elections Commission or NEC asking the government to make available US$20 million for the voters’ registration exercise, but unfortunately, the government only provided US$2 million.
The little cash may not take care of the huge financial obligation of the electoral house, especially with the hiring of thousands of Liberians to help with the voters’ registration exercise, Smith said.
According to him, the lack of sufficient resources to fund the voters’ registration exercise could undermine the process by denying many eligible voters from participating in the process.
He pointed out that any successful electoral process begins with credible voters’ registration excise. He added that the registration of eligible voters is key to the process, anything other than that, he continued, participants, and the public will soon declare the process fraudulent, undemocratic, lack of transparency and unfair.
He noted that any successful election is based on the way voters’ registration is conducted and managed, but the way things are going, he laments, Liberia should be very careful before the worse happen.
Smith, who is seeking his third reelection for the port city of Buchanan, Grand Bassa County at the House of Representatives, indicated that residents of those electoral districts where people are trucked may attacked those being truck towns and resists their registration process.
He also named the reported violation of the Code of Conduct law, which calls for appointed officials of government to resign their post two years to election if he /she want to contest for any elected post.
He maintained that there are ministers, deputies and directors that have declared their intention to contest for the House Representatives in the pending election but are still occupying their posts.
He called on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to immediately call upon those involved to resign or it has the propensity to undermine her high earned public administrative career.
He alleged that some of those officials are using government vehicles and resources to campaign ahead of the NEC timetable for political campaign.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Editing by Othello B. Garblah