U.N. Sanction Victims Will Not Contest General Elections, Says UNMIL Spokesperson


By Josephus Moses Gray
Monrovia, Liberia


The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia
May 9, 2005


Individuals currently serving the United Nations Security Council Travel ban may not vote nor serve as contestants in the forthcoming elections.

Making the disclosure, the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) Electoral Division media Advisor, David Singh, said those affected by the UN Travel restriction will be banned from participating in the electoral process come October 11. According to him, the UN is awaiting the code of conduct from the elections commission.

He further averred that, if the code of conduct, which will govern the process bars the travel ban victims that it will be exactly what the NEC/UNMIL will adhere to.

The UNMIL media Advisor who spoke last week at the UN’s Mission regular media briefing was responding to a question in reference to criminals being bar from participating in the elections.

Recently the Electoral Division of UNMIL announced that with the collaborations of the NEC, they have requested from the Ministry of Justice listing of those Liberians who have been convicted of criminal offenses.

But in responding to this issue to a local daily in Monrovia, the NEC Chair Cllr. Frances Johnson-Morris maintained that her organization is working in full fulfillment of the Liberian Constitution and the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA).

According to her, under the Liberian law someone is presumed innocent until they are proven guilty.

She than disclosed that contrary to the UNMIL media advisor who said they were stay awaiting the code of conduct, the code of conduct governing the electoral process have already been signed.

She said there is noting in the code of conduct which forbids individuals serving UN travel ban from participating in the elections.

As it relates the prohibiting of travel ban victims, it can be recalled that in recent time, some leading pro-democracy and human rights groups called on the NEC to bar people who are placed under the UN travel ban from contesting elective posts.

Notwithstanding, key officials in the than regime of Ex-President Charles G. Taylor have declared their intentions to contest elective post in the October Elections.

Prominent among them include former Information Minister Reginald Goodridge who is eying the presidency, Ex-Militia General, Adolphus Dolo is a Representative aspirant of Nimba County, etc.

Other individuals who are victims of the travel ban are suspended House Speaker George Dweh, former first lady, Jewel Howard Taylor and MODEL General Sampson Qweh, D. Benjamin Taylor and Kai Farley.