The nation’s Special Senatorial election started late Saturday morning at some polling stations in the Paynesville commercial district with some unwanted challenges coming from voters’ names not on the official rooster issued by the National Elections Commission (NEC).
Generally, turnout by eligible voters during the early Saturday morning electoral process was marked by small number of Liberians due to what many political analysts termed ‘voter apathy’ and the failure of many elected Liberians to deliver the kind of socio-economic deliverables such as infrastructural development projects in some of their constituencies in the country.
Regrettably, the Saturday morning start up at the slum community of Rock Hill, northeast of Paynesville City, outside Monrovia was engulfed with violent confrontation. Sadly, there was some violent confrontation among NEC polling staff and some angry voters for several reasons, specifically names and numbers not found on NEC official roster.
At the Baillie Call Mission High School at Wood Camp at the commercial district of Red-light, it was observed that the electoral process was orderly and peaceful as party representatives were seen conducting their electoral activities without complaint. At the FAAC Private High School at Morris Farm, small number of voters were coming in to cast their votes for the candidates of their choice. At another polling station south of the Liberia Coca-Cola Bottling Company in Paynesville, voter turnout was very low but the process was indeed violence free and peaceful from all indications.
Correspondingly, at the St. Matthew Lutheran Church in the immediate premises of the Red-light General Market, voters were coming in very small numbers and majority of the voters pointed out that they were fed up with the Liberian electoral process over the years.
Timing the Situation
Consequently, at the five polling stations visited and toured by our reporter, it was observed that many of voters had gone to the Red-light Market to carry out their regular business transactions and other daily routines that could enhance their livelihoods due to the harsh prevailing economic conditions and fear of contracting the deadly Ebola virus.
However, several vendors and petty traders interviewed at the Red-light Market pointed out that they were to going to vote late this afternoon as they were out there in search of their daily bread and other economic struggle in the highly stressed Ebola virus environment in Monrovia and its environs.
Interstingly, at the five polling stations visited early Saturday morning there was a visible presence of police, immigration and health teams from the three agencies of the Liberian Government.