Diaspora Liberians want to vote in elections
By Lewis S. Teh
To enable diaspora Liberians vote in elections back home, the All Liberian Conference on Dual Citizenship (ALCOD) is urging the Government of Liberia through the National Elections Commission (NEC) to set up and implement electronic voting equipment at every Liberian foreign mission around the globe.
ALCOD Chairman, Mr. Alfred Sieh, who currently resides in the United States, stressed the importance of providing Liberians residing in the diaspora the opportunity to vote like their compatriots back home.
Speaking during an interview with reporters at the weekend in Monrovia, Mr. Sieh defended that this is necessary to put Liberia on par with her counterparts in the region and to cut down expenses incurred by Liberians, who normally return to the country to participate in elections because they don’t have the privilege vote abroad.
He highlighted the constitutional obligation of all Liberians to participate in electoral processes, emphasizing the need for government to introduce measures aimed at affording citizens opportunity to easily vote wherever they reside.
He disclosed that ALCOD is currently in collaboration with diplomats and partners to ensure such call is heeded, saying ALCOD is committed to supporting the NEC in realizing this objective.
“By introducing electronic voting systems, Liberians residing outside the country will have the means to fulfill their civic duties and have a direct impact on the future of Liberia”, he stressed.
Simultaneously, he noted that ALCOD is actively working towards bolstering the country’s economy by establishing a Diaspora Bank.
Chairman Sieh explained that the Diaspora Bank will aim to provide financial assistance to Liberians residing in the United States, who intend to retire and return home to embark on a new chapter of their life after retirement.
The proposed Diaspora Bank, he said intends to offer financial services tailored to the specific needs of returning Liberians, by facilitating their smooth transition back to Liberia and supporting their efforts to contribute to the country’s development.
The proposition is aligned with ALCOD’s broader vision of strengthening ties between diaspora Liberians and their home country, fostering economic growth and progress, he adds.
Mr. Sieh noted that the implementation of such system will not only ensure inclusivity and uphold democratic principles but also empower Liberians abroad to actively participate in shaping the future of their nation with their involvement in decision making process of the country. Editing by Jonathan Browne