Eligible voters from Linden in Region 10 reportedly came out in their numbers to exercise their franchise today as they exercised their democratic right to cast a vote in this year’s Local Government Elections (LGE).
Sean Arthur, a young man in his twenties explained how happy he was to be given the opportunity to vote for the first time. Arthur said he was fully aware of the voting process and understood what needed to be done hence the process this morning was a very ‘smooth’ one.
“It was smooth and quick. I had fun with it. For the General Elections I would normally spend more time though. I would come out since before 6 to avoid the lines but today wasn’t that sort of thing. I just came at the normal time and it was just in, out, and that was it”, Arthur related.
A 72-year-old man told our contact in Linden that he was familiar with the process.
“I voted the last time, that was a long, long time ago. The process was simple. They stamp you as usual. They opened and show you how to vote…,” he said.
However, it should be noted that there were few instances of minor hiccups as some who turned out to vote did not find their names on the list.
One man turned up at the Wisroc Nursery polling place but did not see his name on the Official List of Electors (OLE), which was posted outside of the building. As such he issued a complaint.
The man contended that he voted at the same location over the years for the General Elections. He said he had difficulty in understanding this, however, related that he was told by GECOM staff to wait for a while, while they double-checked.
“I got me ID card everything, but they tell me that me name ain’t on that list. They telling me hold on but I gon go home cause I ain’t able run all about,” he exclaimed.
Meanwhile, A Partnership for National Unity-Alliance for Change (APNU-AFC) Constituency 8 candidate Derron John expressed satisfaction at the process shortly after he casted his vote.
He posited that he is a first time LGE voter and that he strongly believes that the APNU-AFC coalition will securing maximum votes in his constituency.
“I see a number of persons have not yet come out, but we are going to encourage them to come out by providing transportation to assist in the process”, he said.
According to APNU Member of Parliament, Jermaine Figueira, he was happy with the process stating that this is “real power” given to persons so that they can have the choice of electing their community representatives.
“This is the first time a lot of people are participating in Local Government Elections as this was denied since 22 years ago. I too was also denied the opportunity in my teens, my twenties and now I’m in my thirties I feel happy that I can make a contribution in determining who the representative is going to be for my Constituency, he noted.
Also, 57-year-old Elizabeth Gulliver explained that it was the first time she was afforded the opportunity to vote at LGE, noting that she encountered no problems and was “comfortable” with how the process was executed. She recalled that the process of electing a Mayor was “quite different” years ago.
While some Lindeners remained hopeful for the return of Local Democracy and exercised their right to vote, others opted not to do so for various reasons. Some complained of not being properly informed on the process, explaining that they did not know how to vote and what the LGE process entailed.
Others expressed no confidence in prospective Candidates and as such refused to be involved in the voting process.