Senatorial election must not undermine the Ebola fight

The Ebola scare has reduced but folks are still on the alert. Remember, Liberia has not been declared Ebola free.

There are still a number of cases here and there. However, as a people, we deserve a pat on the back for buttressing the efforts of government and the international community which has brought us this far in the fight against the dreadful Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) – at least we can now breathe some air of relief.

Normal Liberian lifestyle is gradually taking back its form and some suddenly halted activities are also resuming one after the other. There’s much optimism that the President’s pronouncement of Zero-Ebola case by Christmas will be achieved.

However, the country and the people of Liberia at this crucial time have no option but to face a necessary evil – the 2014 Special Senatorial Elections. Crowd must be avoided but elections must be held. Elections of this kind cannot easily avoid overcrowding and congestion but there is a need for restriction.

Some have argued that holding the election at this critical time will serve as evidence of the country’s insensitivity towards the fight against EVD, but the government and other stake holders in the election maintain that if not held, the country may plunge into some constitutional crisis.

But is has become obvious that there is no escape from the holding of the elections as the Supreme Court has ruled that in the spirit of Separation of Powers, it recognizes that it is not in its purview to decide whether or not the election should be held in the midst of the Ebola Virus Disease, rather it is a decision that can be taken only by the political branches of government.

The INSIGHT is, however, concerned that the NEC did not announce any regulations as it relates to Ebola preventive measures during these political campaigns.

Besides the regular campaign regulations, the NEC must realize that we are not in normal times and as public health is at risk, there is a need to have a round table discussion with the stakeholders of this election on the manner in which campaigns should be conducted in order not to undermine the lengthy progress we have made as a people and as a nation in the fight EVD.

The INSIGHT also calls on all candidates in this election to take into consideration the preventive measures announced by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare for the prevention of Ebola during their campaign activities.

The INSIGHT further reminds all Liberians that going to the polls is necessary for the building of the nation and strengthening our democratic process.

Abstaining from the election will be to the disadvantage of our democratic process.

It is, however, important that as we engage in activities leading to the elections and the election itself, we must be mindful of ourselves, knowing that our enemy that devastated our economy took away thousands of precious lives is not yet completely defeated. We must continue to adhere to safety measures.


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