While some electorate celebrated after casting their ballots in Saturday’s 20 December special senatorial election, confident that their candidates would win, and others held their breath as counting began at various precincts across the country, other citizens were soaked in tears for the sudden collapse of loved ones at a polling center in Jacob Town, Paynesville and in the street in Gardnersville.
Bystanders fear that the two separate incidents may be Ebola-related as the victims were rushed to hospital with one confirmed dead. The tragedy transpired in Montserrado County electoral districts #2 and #13 respectively. In district #2, a male suspected Ebola patient believed to be in his late 30s was immediately rushed to hospital after showing signs and symptoms of the Ebola Virus Disease.
Though voter’s turnout at the Calvary Temple High School in district#2 which has six polling places was unimpressive, residents stood at a distance and glanced at a team from the Liberia National Red Cross that had gone into the community to examine a man, who was vomiting, sweating profusely and weak. The victim was subsequently taken away by the Red Cross team after bystanders bought him doughnut and a bottle of soft drink, which he refused to eat due to loss of appetite.
Still at the Calvary Temple High School, a 35-year-old voter identified as Nyuama Salamie, who went at the polling center to exercise his franchise was denied by poll workers because someone had already used his name to vote. But Salamie , whose voter’s card was neither perforated nor finger marked with indelible ink, insisted to cast his ballot, arguing that he has not voted, contrary to claim by polling staff. He was however, asked to leave by security deployed at the center.
At the Liberia Community College or LCC located opposite Shoes Factory adjacent Barnersville Junction where another polling center has been established, a taxi driver suddenly collapsed and died instantly as he opened the trunk of his taxicab to take down a passenger’s load. Sorrow gripped the entire surrounding with onlookers in tears as the widow and son of the deceased identified as Harries Toe arrived on the scene.
They told the Liberia National Police or LNP that the late Toe left home left home early Saturday morning the day of polling and was expected back only to hear that he had collapsed and dead. According Madam Toe, when her late husband was leaving home that morning, he didn’t complain of any sickness. However, she recalled that many years ago, he suffered from severe cold, but that was medically resolved and he had been well since.
“My husband didn’t die from Ebola; he left the house this morning and didn’t complain on any sickness; it was two years ago when my husband was suffering from cold but almost one year now he didn’t complain of any sickness. I was sitting in my house when my son called and gave me this news; Oh my people! I finished O-O-O,” the widow wept in her narration.
Meanwhile, the remains of the late Harris Toe have been deposited at Abraham Robert Funeral Home, pending funeral arrangements and subsequent interment.