Low Voter Turn Out Hinders Gambia’s Local Gov’t Elections!!Early Elections Results in APRC’S Favour

By Musukeba Badjie-Ceesay

The turnout at today’s local government elections despite the voter education by the IEC ended in very low turnout by the populace. Some politicians were surprised to see even their close relatives staying behind without going to vote. Many polling stations were reduced as ghost stations. Voters for some reasons did not show up to vote.

As counting started, many politicians are worried about the low voter turn out. According to Musa Bojang of Ebo Town, the election has lost its taste because chance is not given to some good people to throw in their best at these elections, the government instead imposes candidates on them. These candidates he said, are not their choice so people prefer to sit and watch the show.

Meanwhile, the whole chunk of candidates came from APRC and in some areas none challenges them because the people are now brainwashed to only vote for the APRC especially in the Fonis.

Early results have started coming in and it shows good prospects for the ruling party. Mam Nyassi Dukureh, the daughter of the late Alkalo of Bwiam was elected councilor of Bwiam under the APRC ticket. There are couple  of other women councilors in the country. Surprises seem to emerge but until the results are given in full it can not be cleared.

Election observers say the polls were transparent and free of violence. But they complained about the low voter turn out, which is likely affect the outcome of the elections in some areas. Some polling stations opened quite early and voters walked in slowly to cast their votes. Few people voted in some localities. Many don’t seem to value the importance of the elections. They resort to sitting at home. Some areas, like the Kanifing area, the polling stations were empty except the polling agents and other IEC workers that were there. Most polls closed about 2pm when none of the voters were coming again.

The electoral workers were amazed by the poor turn out. They closed some of the polling stations at 4PM. The black materials around some of the polling stations made some voters to scare to go in because they could be seen voting.

The voting went on smoothly, but the whole country apparently was faced with voter apathy because many had feared Jammeh’s threats against them because he is a power hungry leader ready to smite all that challenge him. For more on today’s voting stay tuned. The Freedom Newspaper reporters are busy covering the counting process. We will keep you posted as the news comes in. More is coming!!

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