A group of young men crushed rocks along the Monrovia-Kakata Highway as other citizens in Bong and Montserrado Counties trickled into polling stations on Tuesday expressed disappointment over the election and refused to participate in the voting process.
“We are voting right here,” said William D. K. Flomo, head of the Walker Hill Crush Rock Association. “We are crushing rocks to feed our families. We are very tired of voting for people who are only interested in making themselves rich but don’t care for ordinary Liberians.”
Citizens in Bong and Montserrado counties went to the polls to vote for two senior senators to replace President George Weah and Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor, whose senatorial seats became vacant when the two ascended to the helm of national leadership. Poll watchers and election observers said the turnout was low in both counties.
Some citizens said they did not know about the by-election. Others said they do not trust the electoral process. The economy is tough and the government is spending money on an election where two of the leading candidates—Representatives Saah Joseph, of District 13, Montserrado County and Marvin Cole, of District 3, Bong County, are on the ballot.
Mr. Flomo explained that some of the young people that are into rock crushing have graduated from High schools and seeking further opportunities to enter vocational schools but those law makers they elected have failed them immensely and he and his entire family refused to vote during the just ended election on Tuesday.
“I prefer using my voting time to find food for me and my four (4) children because I am frustrated, especially seeing those people, who are current Representatives, being so greedy for power and forgetting we the ordinary citizens who can’t afford to buy a cup of rice for LD $40 to feed our children.
“I am totally disappointed in the way in which those we elect treat us as slaves in our own motherland, but they run to us when they need us to vote them and put more money their pockets.
I will continue to crush rocks and am no longer interested in voting for anybody on empty stomach when I can crush my rocks and buy a cup of rice a day for my family,” 39 years old Kebbeh Ballah of Walker Hill Crush rock center said.
Bernice Fahnbulleh, who voted at Newport Junior High School, said she was disappointed by the low turnout, but she had to exercise her right to vote.
“I came to vote because it’s my right as a citizen and I believe it is better to vote for the person of my choice in order to have a senator in Montserrado County.”