Liberia: WANEP Describes November 14, 2023, Runoff Election as Peaceful

Liberia: In a second press statement issued on Tuesday, November 14, 2023, the West Africa Network for Peace Building (WANEP) reaffirmed the peaceful nature of the presidential runoff election between Joseph N. Boakai of the Unity Party and George Weah of the CDC.

Building upon their earlier statement from November 13, 2023, which marked the reopening and introduction of the Elections Situation Room (ESR) for the Presidential Runoff Election, WANEP reviewed and analyzed reports submitted by its 133 local observers assigned to 73 prioritized counties.

According to WANEP observers, certain incidents, such as the disaggregation of the voters’ list in alphabetical order leading to delays in the process, have seen improvements. Notably, 91.75% of polling centers were opened at 8:00 am, and procedures outlined by the Electoral Laws were largely observed and followed by National Elections Commission (NEC) polling staff.

The observers highlighted the presence of poll watchers from both political parties, the CDC and Unity Party, with appreciable representation of women. Massive voter turnout was noted, with an average of 123 voters in the queue.

WANEP, however, recommended that the National Elections Commission (NEC) promptly address any further issues that may arise to preserve the peaceful process. The organization emphasized the importance of continued public engagement through media platforms to ensure that citizens are well-informed about ongoing events. Additionally, WANEP called on Liberians to resist the dissemination of unverified and untrue information on social media platforms.

The Election Situation Room (ESR) maintains its primary focus on observing threats to the peaceful conduct of the electioneering process. It provides strategic guidance to prevent and mitigate election-related incidents and is an integral part of the WANEP Electoral Violence Monitoring, Analysis, and Mitigation (E-MAM) project. Supported by the European Union and complemented by Swedish and Australian Development Agencies, the ESR is implemented in partnership with the Office of the Special Representative of the President of the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia.

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