By: R. Joycelyn Wea


Monrovia-Jan-31-TNR:  Amidst the different challenges surrounding the conduct of elections in Liberia, President Joseph Boakai has disclosed his government’s plan to begin reviewing and implementing electoral reform laws.

To begin with, President Boakai said his government will strengthen the National Identification Registry (NIR) to build the needed capacity to be able to capture the comprehensive biometric data needed to feed all agencies including the National Elections Commission (NEC).

“We have had a successful peaceful transfer of power, establishing our credentials as an emerging democracy following a civil war, but while we proudly celebrate this achievement, we are not oblivious to the bottlenecks that regularly attend our elections and mar the electoral process,” president Boakai addressing the Legislature for the first time.

He said, one of the vexing problems noted during the past elections is voter registration and the associated logistical problems, which tend to frustrate and anger voters and political parties, something his government intends to solve by having coded data of all its citizens with the NIR take the lead on that.

Meanwhile, President Boakai made the case for diaspora Liberians when he addressed the national Legislature on Monday thereby proposing an annual diaspora conference on National Development.  

“Our Liberian brothers and sisters in the diaspora are an integral part of our nation and are an extension of our national pride. He continues “They share in our nation’s happiness and sadness, they are readily responsive to the needs of family members and friends in times of difficulty. “

Boakai indicated that diaspora Liberians have a stake in the future of Liberia and his administration will be intentional about ensuring that their take in Liberia is fully harnessed.

The president commended the actions of the 54th Legislature and the past administration for removing what he termed as an unfair burden of citizenship against Liberians who have chosen to explore opportunities in other parts of the world.

“I am glad that the slogan, “once a Liberian is always a Liberian” now has true meaning. We will establish clear and predictable Liberians can play more meaningful roles in Liberia’s future,” President Boakai said.

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