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Liberia Elections 2011: Polling Stations Nearly Empty

As early as the break of dawn today, Liberians have bravely queued up at various polling stations to exercise their constitutional right to vote. At least five supporters of the opposition Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) lost their lives and many more are injured after Monday's clashes between the opposition supporters and security forces. CDC's leader Winston Tubman called on his supporters to boycott today's elections.

@liberiaelection reports:

No CDC party agents at any of the polling centers AEP has visited across the country #Liberia2011 #Liberiaelections

@lutherjake managed to vote:

Just got thru voting in the #liberia2011 election run-off…. #Liberia, please get up and exercise your #democratic rights.

An empty polling center in Monrovia. Photo courtesy of @liberiaelection.

Pray for Liberia:

@PartnersWW: Please pray for our staff and affiliate businesses in Nicaragua and Liberia during the country presidential elections happening right now.

@danrutledge1: Please pray for peaceful elections in Liberia today. They had some violence flare up yesterday and it's a volatile situation.

@kenyakate's tip for journalists in Liberia:

Journalists in #Liberia for run-off: @iLabLiberia has fast Internet connection that ur welcome to use for uploading ur stories #Liberia2011

Below is a map of election-related incidents from the 2011 Elections in Liberia:

The majority of the reports on this site are contributed by Ushahidi Liberia’s partner organizations; each organization has their own protocols and metrics for report verification and publication
- It has been Ushahidi Liberia’s intention from the beginning not to crowdsource information regarding the electoral process. Given the potential for unreliable information and volatility from the crowd in Liberia, we have intentionally sought information from partner organizations whom we have trained in reporting to the platform – a crowdseeding approach rather than crowdsourcing. This is a different approach than is often taken in other deployments of the Ushahidi platform.
- Some members of the crowd made use of the map’s shortcode and sent anonymous messages during the election. Due to the receipt of these messages, the Ushahidi Liberia team created a “crowdsourced” category. We realize that this exception contradicts the original intention to crowdseed information, however we did not want to dismiss or discourage Liberian citizens who made the effort to share information in a climate that typically does not promote information sharing

Polling stations are nearly empty:

@liberiaelection: Reports reaching AEP from across Liberia say turnout is lower than even the referendum polls #Liberia2011

@scarlettlion: Polling station in New Kru Town, which is Weah's area, is all but empty. #liberia2011

@scarlettlion: Monrovia is quiet. Last voting day people were queuing even in the rain at five am. Now, polling stations nearly empty. #liberia2011

Baby looks on as mother goes through the voting process. Photo courtesy of @liberiaelection.

Baby looks on as mother goes through the voting process. Photo courtesy of @liberiaelection.

djbaba says the call for a boycott may be working:

I went for a morning jog following a similar route I ran the morning of the October 11 elections in Liberia. On October 11, the atmosphere was one filled with anticipation as voters braved the pouring rain to make sure their voices were heard. Today it seems like a majority of the voters have stayed home so far. Two polling stations had maybe one tenth the number of voters they had by 7:30 AM as they did on October 11, and the weather is nice and sunny today.

But then again on October 11, people were voting for Legislative as well as Presidential elections while today the vote is a run-off between two Presidential Candidates. Maybe Liberian's care more about Legislative elections? Or maybe the 70% voter turnout was a result of 15 Presidential hopefuls? I doubt it though. The CDC's call for voters to boycott the election may indeed be working but to what end?

As the New Democrat Newspaper Column says, “THIS TOO IS LIBERIA!!!”

Following the boycott by the opposition leader Winston Tubman, Africa's first female president and Nobel Peace Laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf remains the only candidate.

  • Morris

    One death has been confirmed from the Monday’s incident. Voters turnout was expected to be low today and the call the for a boycott by CDC plus the fear factor only added to voter’s apathy.

    The incident on Monday could have been avoided only if those who are seeking state power had adhered to rule of law. It was clearly stated that all campaign activities and/or rallies came to a halt on midnite Sunday.

    In complete disregard to the NEC and government’s mandate, CDC decided to take to the streets to stage what it term ‘peaceful’ march. This was a sad day in this country- it was like a deja vu. Businesses closed early, people walking for miles as the traffic was clogged for a better part of the afternoon. What a pity! This is the result when leaders failed to listen to the voice of reason.

    • http://www.liberiancounselor.blogspot.com Counselor Track

      It’s unfortunate that Liberians had to be dragged negatively down memory’s lane as such incident should have been avoided.Monday’s scenes gave me a flashback of our civil unrest and anarchy days….The best we all pray for is that those who are responsible will be held accountable!

      My deepest condolence to the bereaved families and the nation Liberia!

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