News / Africa

ECOWAS Increases Number of Poll Monitors for Liberia Run-off Vote

Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) President James Victor Gbeho during a news conference on the election dispute in Ivory Coast by ECOWAS in Nigeria's capital Abuja, January 4, 2011.
Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) President James Victor Gbeho during a news conference on the election dispute in Ivory Coast by ECOWAS in Nigeria's capital Abuja, January 4, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio
  • Clottey interview with Ambassador James Victor Gbeho, president of the ECOWAS Commission

Peter Clottey

The top official of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) says the group’s poll monitors will begin arriving in Liberia’s capital, Monrovia, Wednesday to observe the November 8 run-off.

Ambassador James Victor Gbeho, president of the ECOWAS Commission, says the sub-regional bloc anticipates a peaceful, transparent and a credible vote.

“Our observers will be arriving there to observe every aspect of the election,” said Gbeho. “We are sending them earlier, because observation is not only done on polling day. We will satisfy ourselves that the arrangements being made are fair and credible.”

ECOWAS will deploy 200 observers across Liberia. It deployed about 150 poll monitors in the first round of voting. Gbeho says the group will also coordinate with other international observing groups to monitor the poll.

“Obviously, we cannot be in every polling station, but I can assure you that we will be in every province of Liberia,” said Gbeho. “We will hold consultations with the Carter Center of the United States [and] exchange views with them.”

He expressed optimism about the conduct of the poll, but also said there’s some anxiety.

“The country had a long history of conflict from which it has just emerged. And the aftermath of the first round showed that some of them were poor losers and are contemplating bringing everything to a halt if they do not win,” said Gbeho. “I have publicly appealed to them to accept the verdict if we adjudged it to be free fair and transparent so that we break this cycle of always challenging election results because you are on the losing side.”

The sub-regional bloc described the first round vote as free and fair. But the opposition dismissed the final result, claiming voter irregularities, which they said undermined the credibility of the poll.

Their claims of voter fraud, some observers say, forced National Elections Commission Chairman, James Fromayan to resign ahead of the run-off.

Gbeho said ECOWAS is working closely with the two remaining parties to ensure their concerns are addressed before the vote.

“I have a special envoy Major General Seth Obeng… and he has been in daily almost hourly touch with the United Nations mission there, UNMIL, as well as other organizations [to ensure a peaceful vote],” he said.

He expressed hope that Liberians will prove that democracy is maturing in the country.

“It was necessary to give the peace message to them so that we all are on our best behavior on that day, so that there are no conflicts and that this can prove the maturity of Liberia,” said Gbeho. “This will prove that Liberians can change government peacefully, from one peaceful government to another, and so we are all looking forward to that day.”

You May Like

Scotland Vote Raises Questions of International Law

Experts say self-determination, as defined and protected by international law, confined narrowly to independence movements in process of de-colonization More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

Annual Military Exercise Takes on New Meaning for Ukraine Troops

Troops from 15 nations participating in annual event, 'Rapid Trident' in western Ukraine More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid