20 October 2017

Liberia: Women Seek Change in Election Dates

The Women's Situation Room-Liberia (WSR) has released its observation report on the first round of the October 10, 2017 Presidential and Representative Elections in which the group is recommending the change in the election date.

According to a statement issued Thursday in Monrovia, WSR-Liberia said a change in the dates of election should be considered so that elections are held in the dry season.

The Women observed that if this change is considered, if would eliminate the problems encountered during elections in the Rainy Season.

The Women's Situation Room believes that conducting elections during the Rainy Season adversely affects the ability of the National Elections Commission (NEC) to distribute ballots, electoral materials and the deployment of staff.

Commenting on other election matters, the Women are requesting the immediate training of polling staff in the case where there is run-off election.

They indicated that the training is necessary due to the high percentage of invalid votes, which according to them, was attributed to polling staff inking fingers of before ballots were deposited in the boxes. WSR also pointed to other inefficiencies of polling staff as part of their observation during the just ended elections.

"Additional voters' education prior to the implementation of any run-off election should be undertaken; and civil society should be recruited to carry out the training," the Women group suggested.

They also stressed the need to put the names of voters in alphabetical order in the Voter Registration Book in each polling center so as to eliminate the long time it takes polling staff to locate voters on the registry.

The Women's Situation Room commended Liberians for turning out to vote in an orderly and peaceful manner.


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