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2014 Senatorial Poll Saw 25% Lower Turnout - US Report
By Robert Dixon, LINA
MONROVIA April 18 (LINA) –Turn-out during the December 2014 Special Senatorial Elections in Liberia was 25 percent lower compared to the 2005 and 2011 general elections, according to the U.S. Department of State 2015 Human Rights Report on Liberia.
The Country Reports on Human Rights Practices are submitted annually by the U.S. Department of State to the U.S. Congress in compliance with sections 116(d) and 502B(b) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (FAA).
The 2014 Special Senatorial Election took place at the height of the Ebola Virus Disease and had 15 of the 30 seats in the Upper House up for grabs, something that could have affected turn-out.
The report indicated that elections complaints were resolved either through the National Elections Commission (NEC) or by the Supreme Court, adding that both international and national observers declared the elections free, fair, transparent, and credible despite some minor irregularities.
The report said in addition to a woman president, there were three women in the 20-member national cabinet and three women in the 30-seat Senate with eight in the 73-seat House of Representatives.
The report stressed that two female associate justices sat on the five-member Supreme Court bench during the period under review.
It also said women constituted 33 percent of local government officials and 13 percent of senior and deputy ministers.
The report also indicated that in a predominantly Christian country, three cabinet ministers, six deputy cabinet ministers, one senator, eight representatives, one Supreme Court Justice, and one county superintendent are Muslims.