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Around The Country – Elections Updates From Four Counties – November 18, 2020

Stay informed with happenings in your county, follow LocalVoicesLiberia every week day for the latest update on the Special Senatorial elections, COVID-19 and other important developments.


 Maryland County: Superintendent Cautions Ivorian Refugees Against Electoral Violence in Liberia


Supt. Prowd recently led a delegation of staff of UNHCR and WFP to the Little Wlebo Camp, where over 500 new Ivorian refugees have just arrived | Report By: Bryan Dion; Photo By: Moses Geply


Maryland County Superintendent George Prowd is calling on Ivorian refugees to avoid interfering in the upcoming senatorial elections.

His statement comes amid reports that some Ivorians refugees were participating in political campaign activities which erupted into tension that reportedly led to the alleged flogging of a school principal in the county.

“As we have come today to welcome you to our county, we also want to call on you all to stay away from our elections, especially when the candidates are launching their respective campaigns,” he told the Ivorians during a recent visit to the Little Welbo Camp.

“We are in difficult times also in our country where we are going to elect people in office, and we don’t want what’s happening in other countries like yours to happen here too.

“We should all maintain the peace and have a successful election that will make all of us free. If that’s done than we are all moving somewhere and all of us will be free.”

Meanwhile, Superintendent Prowd indicated that if Liberia should be free for both the refugees and citizens, it is incumbent upon all to maintain the peace.

He also called on the Liberia National Police to adequately monitor the refugees camp and protect them from danger as many Ivorians continue to cross into Maryland County. Scores of refugees have been crossing into Liberia amid fears of post-election violence in their country.


Bong County: Residents of Rural Town Threaten to Boycott Senatorial Poll

Residents of Kpateyamah town in Suakoko district have threatened to boycott the upcoming senatorial election because they have been “abandoned” by the lawmaker of the constituency and the county authorities.

Speaking to LocalVoicesLiberia recently, the residents of the town, which has approximately 300 residents, claimed their community has been neglected by the district representative.

“Our big-big people always promised us that they will help us but that is on the contrary,” said Nathaniel Kerkulah, youth president of Kpateyamah town.

They named the lack of safe drinking water, lack of qualified teachers for the only elementary school, and bad road connection as some major challenges they are faced with.

Kerkulah added: “My brother to be frank with you, we are suffering. Our wives and children travel long distances just to get us well water in the bush and it is killing us because we drink from these different open wells. The children, at time, comedown with running stomach, fever or malaria”.

Another resident of the community, Gormah Togbah added that the lack of health facility is one of the many reasons for the decision to boycott the upcoming senatorial elections. “We can’t continue to elect people to government that don’t represent our interest but rather themselves,” she said.

“We go to election with the expectations that our lives are about to change for the better, but since we been electing people, we are yet to get the benefit”.


Grand Bassa County: Female Advocate Urges Postponement of Referendum


Madam Karnga is a well-known female advocate in Grand Bassa County | Report By: Elton Tiah; Photo credit: Onesimus Garway


The Executive Director of the Bassa Women Development Association (BAWODA) has called for the postponement of the National Referendum, analogizing  that “it is impossible to hold a marriage ceremony and burial activities at the same time in the same environment”.

Madam Martha Karnga said conducting the referendum amid the special senatorial election and two by-elections in the country will make things complicated for the voters.

“Election [day] is a serious day for everybody and with a parallel process, people would be made to have a divided attention,” she said, adding that the referendum proposition calling for change in the election date from October to November each year is “not necessary”

“Instead of focusing on changing election dates, let’s focus on improving roads through road construction in particularly rural areas,” she said.

Speaking further about the referendum, she added: “My overall view is [that] referendum should be suspended so that civic education would be administered in adequate time to ensure citizens’ full understanding regarding the national instrument”.


Gbarpolu County: Recruitment kick-off for poll workers


Assistant Election Magistrate Willie Sumo insists that the recruitment will be merit based | Photo By: Henry B. Gbolouma, Jr.


Following the lifting of the ban on election activities by the Supreme Court, the Assistant Election Magistrate of Gbarpolu County, Mr. Willie Sumo has announced the recruitment of poll workers for the county.

“We are asking qualified Liberians age 18 and above to apply to participate in the upcoming December 8, special election and referendum in Gbarpolu County,” he said,

He said added that the recruitment process started on November 12 and will end on December 20. He named available positions as presiding officers, voters’ identification officers, ballot paper issuer, ballot box controllers and queue controllers.

Applicants must attach a valid passport or driver license or voter ID card or National ID card to be eligible, he said, stressing that “there will be no compromise in the selection process”.

He also indicated that people who will be selected during this recruitment period much pass in both aptitude test and post training test “because the credibility and transparency of the whole electoral process starts from the poll workers”.


This content sharing initiative is supported by Internews under the Liberia Media Development program, with funding from USAID-Liberia. However, these contents are gathered and published independently by Local Voices Liberia, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the funder.


 

Local Voices Liberia is a network of dedicated Liberian journalists based in the 15 counties working to lift the development concerns and progress of rural communities.

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