News / Africa

Poll Monitoring Group Hails ‘Peaceful, Inspiring’ Liberia Vote

Ma-Fanta Konneh, 60, casts her vote for president at a polling station in Kendeja Community School in Monrovia, Liberia, Oct. 11, 2011.
Ma-Fanta Konneh, 60, casts her vote for president at a polling station in Kendeja Community School in Monrovia, Liberia, Oct. 11, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio
  • Clottey interview with Dr. John Stremlau, vice president for peace programs at the Carter Center

Peter Clottey

A top official of the U.S.-based Carter Center says Liberia’s National Elections Commission did a “fine job” in organizing the just-ended presidential and legislative elections.

Poll monitor John Stremlau, who is a vice president for peace programs at the Carter Center, says his group will officially issue its preliminary report Thursday, two days after the poll.

“It’s just inspiring to see this determination to demonstrate that they have made such progress since the terrible civil war,” said Stremlau. “This is the first election they have run themselves, and the National Electoral Commission has done a fine job as we can tell, and we are very heartened by what we’ve seen.”

Stremlau said Liberians defied a heavy downpour to vote.

“We saw with great patience people waiting hours and in good spirits,” said Stremlau. “I have seen such dedication by poll workers who have not been fed all day and are making absolutely certain that all parties that wanted to be represented are here…They are being absolutely scrupulous and making certain that the votes are counted and counted accurately.”

The Carter Center’s poll observer delegation comprises 55 members from about 25 different countries that monitored Liberia’s general election.

Some analysts expressed concern there could be violence following reports of heated rhetoric from partisans in the run-up to the vote. But, Stremlau praised both the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union for playing a key role to ease tensions, ahead of the polls.

“What has impressed us in the last days of this campaign where we have been here is how civil the parties have been to each other,” said Stremlau. “The rhetoric earlier in the campaign raised some concerns in West Africa and brought special ECOWAS envoys to Liberia to urge restraint, to urge civil discourse, [and] to urge a free and fair election. I think that really had a positive impact.”

Stremlau also said he is encouraged by the way Liberians peacefully conducted themselves during the voting process. He also praised the electoral commission for organizing a peaceful vote despite what he called “some shortcomings” in civil education, ahead of the vote.

“We are going to review our findings from having [to] discuss with them, but my overall impression is they performed exemplary,” said Stremlau.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in pubic More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid