CSOs Decry Destruction Of Campaign Posters

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Some civil society organizations in Maryland County said they are deeply concerned about the intentional tearing down of fliers and posters of candidates by unknown individuals in the county.

They are then calling on the National Elections Commission (NEC) and law enforcement agencies to act swiftly.

The civil society groups said they strongly condemn the recent incidents of tearing down campaign posters, pointing out that such actions are not only illegal but also undermine the democratic process by limiting candidates’ ability to communicate with voters.

The CSOs made specific references to Harper District representative candidates Lucy Jappy Momo of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) and William W. Wallace – independent candidate, as well as senatorial candidates William Philip Anderson of the New Liberia Party and incumbent Senator J. Gble-bo Brown of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) whose posters were unlawfully removed and torn down.

The groups urged individuals responsible for these acts to immediately desist from further damaging of campaign materials, adding that their actions do not only violate the principles of free expression and fair competition but also show a disregard for the democratic values that the society upholds.

The CSOs also called on law enforcement agencies to thoroughly investigate these incidents and hold the perpetrators accountable.

 

The Maryland County Civil Society Council, in a statement released through its chairman, Thomas B. Mawolo, indicated that it is crucial that those who engage in such vandalism face appropriate legal consequences, sending a clear message that such behavior is unacceptable in a democratic society.

Furthermore, the group encourages political parties, candidates, and their supporters to uphold the principles of fair play and respect for the democratic process.

The groups believe that engaging in acts of vandalism or tampering with campaign materials only serves to further polarize society and hinders the ability of citizens to make informed choices.

This action has contravened the Farmington River Declaration signed March 27, 2023 by political party representatives and candidates, committing to a violence-free election, the group added.

“Let it be noted that candidates spent a lot of money on those materials, so they shouldn’t be destroyed because of political differences and dislike of a candidate. Plucking out of candidates’ eyes on their individual photos and defacing them and unlawfully removing placards is totally unnecessary and unacceptable,” the council stressed.

For  candidates whose posters, fliers were unlawfully removed, the CSOs extended apology to them and also thanked them for informing the public about the situation.

Source: LINA

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