News / Africa

ECOWAS Officials to Assess Liberia Security Ahead of Elections

Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) President James Victor Gbeho (file photo)
Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) President James Victor Gbeho (file photo)

Multimedia

Audio
  • Clottey interview with Ambassador James Victor Gbeho, president of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) commission,

Peter Clottey

Top security officials in six West African countries are scheduled to meet in the Liberia capital, Monrovia Tuesday.

The security officials, who include the Chiefs of Defense Staff and Police, have been tasked by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), to assess the security situation there, ahead of the October general elections.

Ambassador James Victor Gbeho, president of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) commission, said his group is coordinating with Liberia’s electoral body to ensure a free and fair vote.

His comments come as the heads of state of Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Senegal met in a mini-summit last week in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja.

The leaders expressed concern about the security situation “along the corridor between the two member states and within Liberia, characterized by criminal activities of non-state armed groups, by the presence and circulation of small arms and light weapons and by the plight of refugees, returnees and internally-displaced persons.”

“[They] looked at the situation, and they have prescribed that ECOWAS should cooperate even closer with the United Nations in securing the safety of Liberia, particularly during the election period,” said Gbeho.

He also said the heads of state will this week meet with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to request for more technical assistance and cooperation.

Gbeho expressed confidence the officials will assess the security situation in Liberia before the October 11 elections.

The heads of state also resolved to create a peaceful environment to ensure a successful vote. The leaders declared zero tolerance for any attempt to undermine free and fair elections in Liberia.

Some observers have expressed concern the leaders’ statement leaves little room for the Liberia opposition to express their grievances over the October vote, an assertion with which Gbeho sharply disagrees.

“Those responsible for the leadership of this region of Africa know very well what threats there can be to the electoral process in countries like Liberia, where there is a lot of incitement from contenders and their followers and attempts to derail the whole process,” said Gbeho. “As for the refusal to accept the outcome this unfortunately is becoming a habit, and that’s why the heads [of states] reacted so strongly.”

Gbeho also said he has dispatched officials of the ECOWAS to help Liberia’s electoral body to organize a credible vote.

He also said the leaders want to ensure the recent conflict in neighboring Ivory Coast doesn’t negatively impact next month’s vote in Liberia.

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee 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.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid