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Carter Center Official Denies Conducting Liberian Opinion Survey

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James Butty

The Carter Center has denied it is the source of a purported opinion poll circulating on the Internet predicting the October 11 Liberian presidential election will end in a run-off.

Alexander Bick, the Election Observation Mission director for the Atlanta-based Carter Center said the non-partisan, independent organization does not conduct opinion polls.

“We are in Liberia with a number of different programs and we’re here to assess the electoral preparation, to meet with stakeholders from all parties, and to give a clear sense of what we see about the electoral process. The Carter Center does not conduct opinion polls; we have not conducted opinion polls in Liberia, and we reject as false this document that is currently circulating,” he said.

Bick said the center views the poll as an attempt to mislead the Liberian public and called on Liberians to be wary in assessing information about the electoral process.

“I think that what we would encourage Liberians to do is to be vigilant and very careful in how they assess information put into the news media during the electoral process, and we would call on all groups that would seek to confuse potential voters and citizens to be very careful.  This is a contested electoral environment and it’s very important that people have access to accurate information,” he said.

Bick said the Carter Center is leading a delegation of international election observers in Liberia.

“We opened an office in the beginning of September and have deployed now several teams of long-term observers who will remain in Liberia for a period of three months observing the electoral preparations and meeting with stakeholders throughout Liberia’s 15 counties,” Bick said.

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