Monrovia, Liberia – The National Muslim Students Association of Liberia has warned the National Elections Commission staff members firmly against discriminating against Muslims based solely on their names, their dress, or their inability to speak fluently.
Abraham Dorley, the association’s president, revealed that his group had learned that some voter centers were turning away some women and men due to their last names, educational backgrounds, and pronouncing skills.
Mr. Dorley asserted during a news conference in Monrovia that preventing Muslims from registering is a violation of their rights.
Therefore, the National Muslim Students Association of Liberia is advising Muslims who have been denied access to the biometric voter registration process to get in touch with the local student agents who are on the ground to help overcome these challenges.
The statement urged all Muslim youths and students who had attained the voting age of 18 to go near voter registration offices and obtain a voter’s card because it was the best way to ensure that one could affect the necessary changes in the political system of this large nation, Liberia.
He strongly denounced any illegal activity, such as getting two voter registration cards, because the organization will stand by the law if anyone is found engaging in such behavior.
The association warned NEC against barring Muslims from the registration process due to the ongoing discrimination against Muslims in a number of electoral processes, including the presidential and legislative elections in 2011 and 2017, as well as the 2023 midterm senatorial election.
The Muslim Student Association issued a warning to NEC staff members, noting that it had over time noticed in a number of electoral procedures that sisters and mothers had been denied the opportunity to take photos due to their hijabs. Mr. Dorley claims that the NEC registrars have requested that they reveal themselves before having their pictures taken, which is against their religious beliefs and their basic rights.
The Muslim student organization denounced this act of exclusion against their people and urged their mothers and sisters to report any occurrences to the association and their agents, who routinely patrol the different voter registration centers.
The association also suggests that people who face such difficulties practice patience, keep their composure, and act politely until the issue can be resolved.
Reported by: Augustine Octavius