‘Original Countryman’ Kicked Out Of Dist. #11 Race

By Morrison O.G. Sayon

With just thirty-three more days to the conduct of the October 10, General and Presidential Elections, the legislative bid of Thomas Nimene Tweh alias Original Countryman of District Eleven, Montserrado County has suddenly been dashed with the Supreme Court officially ordering the National Elections Commission (NEC) to implement its August 31 ruling.

The court through it Clerk on September 5, 2023, wrote a communication to the Chairperson of the National Election Commission (NEC) ordering the electoral body to implement the opinion and judgment of the supreme court handed down in the Objection to Nomination case involving  Siah Jamie Tandapolie of the New Liberia Party (NLP), Representative candidate of District Eleven, Montserrado County and James Marwieh, eminent citizen, District#11, Montserrado County Versus Thomas Nimene Tweh, Representative Aspirant of District Eleven, Montserrado County.

A communication from the high court noted, “Dear Honorable Lansanah; in keeping with instructions of the Honorable Supreme Court of the Republic of Liberia, I have the honor to transmit the accompanying certified copy of the opinion and judgment handed down by the Honorable Supreme Court on the 31st Day of August A. D. 2023. You are hereby commanded to comply with the foregoing Judgment immediately and your return to this Mandate as to how it was executed.”

It can be recalled that the Supreme Court which is the final arbitral of justice in Liberia on August 31, 2023 handed down ruling in the Objection to Nomination case dashing the legislative hope of Thomas Nimene Tweh otherwise known as Original Countryman on the basis of not being a resident of District #11 and his failure to renounce his dual citizenship.

The nomination of Thomas Nimene Tweh at the NEC was challenged by Siah Jamie Tandapolie, James Marwieh Eminent, and others who filed in complaint at the NEC on grounds that Mr. Tweh is not a legitimate resident of District Eleven.

“Having carefully examined the facts contained in the records, listened to the arguments of the parties, and considered the evidence and laws relevant thereto, and wherefore and in view of the foregoing, the ruling of the Board of Commissioners of the NEC which confirmed the ruling of the Hearing Officers, is hereby reversed,” the Supreme Court ruling noted.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of Liberia has ordered the national Elections omission (NEC) to resume jurisdiction over the case and give effect to its Judgment costs are ruled against the appellee.

The findings which determined the ruling of the court noted that it was established by the Geo-Information Services (GIS) of the NEC that the Appellee, Dr. Thomas Nimene Tweh is not domiciled in Electoral District#11, he is not eligible to contest in the said District.”

The full bench of the Supreme Court of Liberia mandates the National Elections Commission to enforce its August 31, 2023 judgment disqualifying Representative District #11 candidate Thomas Tweh alias Original Countryman.

The Supreme Court in its mandate sent to the NEC on Tuesday, commanded the NEC to comply with the judgment immediately and to have them file their returns to the court.

It can be recalled that on August 31, 2023, the high court reversed the National Elections Commission ruling that confirmed the ruling of the hearing officer to allow District #11 Representative candidate Dr. Thomas Nimene Tweh to contest the election.

The court in its opinion delivered by Chief Justice Sie-Nyene Yuoh, said that Dr. Tweh commonly called Original Country Man is not eligible to contest in the district in the ensuing October polls. The court in its opinion delivered by Chief Justice Sie-Nyene Yuoh said Dr. Tweh commonly called Original Countryman is not eligible to contest the district..

Lawyers representing Original Countryman prepared the motion but it was never received by any of the justices to be filed by the Clerk of the Supreme Court. However, Mr. Tweh has been finally denied from contesting the race in the October 10 General and Presidential Elections.

The battle that led to the disqualification of Mr. Tweh alias Original Countryman was brought against him by two of his opponents who are seeking the same representative seat in the district. Tweh has been a strong contender in the district to incumbent Richard Koon whose six-year mandate has come to an end.

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