Monrovia — Cllr. Joseph Jallah, a proxy candidate of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) in Tuesday’s senatorial by-election in Lofa County, has taken a wide margin lead in the contest.
FrontPageAfrica had earlier reported that Garlakpai Kortimai of the opposition Unity Party (UP) had jumped into an early lead as shown by results from Lofa’s Upper region, having obtained 6,107 votes compared to Jallah’s 2,941 votes, according to tally sheets provided by staffers of the National Elections Commission (NEC).
Kortimai obtained 5, 877 votes, while Jallah garnered 1,716 votes, as results posted by electoral staff of NEC from tally room two in upper Lofa showed.
However, Jallah has now left his closest challenger trailing far behind as the (NEC) edges closer to the end of tallying.
From the results announced by the NEC Thursday, Jallah, an Independent candidate, now has an unassailable lead that could see him emerge as the next senator of Lofa County.
From 381 out of the 454 polling places, Jallah obtained 20,482 votes compared Kortimai’s 16,666 votes.
Is Jallah coasting to victory?
The CDC-backed candidate appears to be on his way to the Capitol Building having garnered 17,362 votes at the expense of Kortimai’s 9,245 votes in lower Lofa. The total margin between Jallah and Kortimai as provided by the NEC local office is 8,117 votes.
Jallah has the majority of the votes cast in Kolahun and Vahun Districts and put up a strong challenge in Foya, home to former Vice President and standard bearer of UP Joseph Boakai.
In Vahun, as results from NEC show, Jallah won with 858 votes, followed by District Four representative Mariamu Fofana with 682 votes, and George Samah with 669 votes. Entirely, there are 38 polling places and seven precincts, which are predominantly Vahun Administrative District.
Jallah’s victory a triumph of Democracy, Rep. Fofana
Meanwhile, Rep . Fofana was the first to send a message of congratulations to “senator-elect” Jallah, describing his victory as a testament to the triumph of hardwork, resilience, and consistency.
“It is a resounding endorsement by the people of Lofa County,” she said.
“It now behoves on the senator-elect, to reciprocate the support of the people by doubling his effort to sustain good governance and accountability to the people.”
Also, Momo Cyrus, a candidate in the just ended senatorial by-election, Thursday took to Facebook to congratulate Jallah on his historic win, saying it was a victory for the county.
However, some elite members of UP appear poised to reject the final results of the NEC amid allegations of vote rigging. Mo Ali, secretary general of Unity Party, posted on Facebook Wednesday.
“We understand the tactics but it doesn’t work with us because we know it better. Latest results from our “war room”: Out of the 454 Polling Places, we have completed 369 Polling Places constituting 81.27%. Cllr. Jallah: 15,089 votes, Kortimai: 20,022 votes, Mariamu Fofana: 5,093, Momo Cyrus: 4,379, Beyan Samah: 2,136, and Sumo Kupee: 1, 341.”
“The information that we have received shows that the Lofa people voted Unity Party,” Ali said.
Also, Bobby Abu Metzger, a staunch supporter of UP took to his Facebook page Wednesday to congratulate the people of Lofa for voting Kortimai.
“Congratulations to Senator-elect Kortimai, go and serve the people of Lofa County and Liberia as well. I, therefore, urged you to be a vibrant senator like Sen. Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence, Sen. Abe Darius Dillon, and others who speak without fear. You’re one of the advantageous senators who has been blessed by JNB (Joseph Nyumah Boakai) and others who formulated your dream to come through, lead with enthusiasm, and respect those who stood for you in bringing your ambition forth.”
He added: “Senator-elect Kortimai, you are not a mistake in the lives of the ordinary people, those who believe in their predecessors that is the reason, they voted you to serve them as their predecessors are doing and continue to work in their interests.”