9 March 2017

Liberia: JPC Intensifies Voters Education in Bong

The Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (JPC), with support from the German agency GIZ, has ended another round of its Civic Voters Education (CVE) campaign on the ongoing voters registration in Bong County.

The recent campaign, which was held in the Gbarnga Iron Gate Community, was the fourth in the series of CVE campaigns in Gbarnga which brought together several residents of the city and its environs.

JPC Regional Coordinator Jesse Cole told the Liberia News Agency that a series of awareness campaigns were conducted in Gbarnga, including the J.F Clark School, the busy Monrovia and Ganta parking lots, among others.

Mr. Cole said similar civic education campaign on the voter registration is ongoing in various districts in Bong County, including Sanoyea, Zota, Panta, Kokoyah, Suakoko, Salala, and Jorquelleh 1&2.

He explained that the JPC is using approved messages from the National Elections Commission to encourage more citizens' participation in the ongoing voter registration and the elections on October 10.

Mr. Cole noted that the JPC-GIZ project initially focused on enhancing the skills of young people in and around Gbarnga to increase sensitization against gender- based violence, including rape, and other civic messages on nation building.

He said the need for comprehensive civic and voters education around Liberia is crucial to the success of the presidential and legislative elections in October.

He cited the recent Lofa County by-election where the National Elections Commission recorded 30,001 registrants but only 10,603 of this number turned out to vote.

"According to the Commission, there were 771 invalid votes. In Liberia, many citizens, including the educated ones, don't know how to mark the ballot papers, a situation past and current administrations at the country's electoral commission have indicated," Cole noted.

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