LIBERIA: As Phase Two BVR Kicks Off in Lofa County, Citizens Outline Challenges

By: James M. Kollie Contact: 0775836932/0881347782

Chairperson of the National Elections Commission (NEC), Davidetta Brown Lansannah

As the National Elections Kick off the phase two of the BVR in Lofa County, citizens interviewed by reporters have outlined some factors that they believed may lead to electoral violence during the process and impede the smooth exercise if the process is cautiously worked on.

The phase two of the Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) exercise ahead of the most anticipated October 10, 2023 presidential and legislative elections started April 21, 2023 in eight counties including Lofa County.

As per the National Elections Commission timetable the process is expected to run from April 21 to May 11, 2023, as a result, scores of citizens of who spoke to reporters complained of the slow pace of the exercise due to the faultiness of electoral equipment including solar panels intended for the smooth operation of the exercise.

NEC workers at various BVR centers successfully completed the set up before 8:00am but did not start on time as was expected the situation according to our correspondent infuriated some people who had gathered very early in the morning to complete the process returning to their normal activities.

“The voter registration process has begun and people are turning out in their numbers to register but is very slow and if NEC would achieve its goal of registering more people in Lofa, it has to improve on the equipment and some of the staff” Emmanuel Fayia a resident of Foya Kama said.

Some have also identified potential of electoral violence during the BVR exercise in Lofa County. They named trucking of registrants from one place to another and delay and unpreparedness of NEC workers as factors that may lead to violence.

“People are leaving their normal activities and going to centers in the name of getting voter registration cards; so if the equipment keeps ma-functioning citizens will get angry and may react negatively” Nancy Kpehe of Koiba City said

Our correspondent saw NEC’s workers applying efforts to secure enough energy supply from the solar power provided to them to power the laptop and others equipment.

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