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The Governance Commission (GC) as part of its civic Education Forum on the electoral environment will on this Thursday September 14 organized a stakeholder forum under the theme: ‘Education and Healthcare Delivery’ in support of a national discourse on the role of electorate, their expectations and challenges during elections at a local hotel in Monrovia.

According to a press statement issued Tuesday in Monrovia, the forum seeks to provide an opportunity where politicians, citizens and experts on electoral matters will provide information that ensures political education of citizens’ understanding of the difficulties the country faces during this transition.
The Governance Commission (GC) further noted that the forum is the first of a series of forums expected to take place in same venue for three days and will bring together participants from national government, the private sector, the media, academic institutions and civil society organizations.
Topics under discussion for the three days civic education forum on the electoral environment include education and healthcare delivery, sustainable economic development and growth, and agriculture and food security.
It is being recorded that Liberia’s campaign period has started and candidates are vying for the support of the electorates and campaign discourse is often dominated by what politicians promise to achieve while attempts to tarnish the reputation of political rivals are another salient element.
This style is partly driven by the electorate’s expectations and candidates’ calculations of political gains. As documented by GC, in popular political culture, democracy is often understood as a right and opportunity to demand certain deliverables from political leaders, rather than right to participate in making decisions and searching for solutions to collective challenges.
At the same time, political success of development is perceived to be a question of the moral integrity of leaders, rather than skillful maneuvering in a challenging political and economic environment characterized by constraints.
These factors according to GC create incentives for candidates to make unrealistic promises and undermine the reputation of political rivals.
It says the downside is that unrealistic promises are bound to produce disappointment later and feed mistrust of grassroots of political elites and the state.
This, the GC said the ‘citizens fora’ are meant to provide a forum where background information on the challenges Liberia faces are provided in an accessible form and policy options are discussed with the view to provide possible positive and negative effects.

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