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Liberian IDs short for vote; could you clear your throat for security?

The math usually looks bad for somebody in the runup to an election, but in Liberia’s case this election year, it is possible few if anyone will like the numbers.

The campaign to create biometric national ID cards for all of Liberia‘s 2.5 million potential voters, now more than a decade old, has netted just 605,000 citizens.

To be more specific, that number represents everyone who has enrolled in the country’s national ID registry for an ID card. Only a number less than 605,000 has registered to vote and the deadline to do so is May 11.

The conundrum could result in one of the most unusual forms of voice analysis in the world today.

In order to vote this year, according to reporting by FrontPageAfrica, people registering to cast a ballot will need a birth certificate, passport or national ID card and that is a problem.

Birth certificates and passports are harder to come by in rural Liberia, so the National Elections Commission has for some time pushed people to get an ID. In fact, commissioners had said the national ID would be the priority identification document.

And while until recently they sounded like they just might pull this off, no one in the nation seems confident anymore.

The leader of the Unity Party says he has been told by elections commissioners that they will be less than stringently requiring voting registrants to have the national ID.

But some assurances must be made, and it looks like citizens will face a highly unusual form of voice recognition.

Commissioners will listen for a Liberian accent.

One political group, the Collaborating Political Parties, told FrontPageAfrica that requiring national ID cards at this point in the registration process is as unrealistic as requiring a Liberian accent as acceptable ID. The math usually looks bad for somebody in the runup to an election, but in Liberia’s case this election year, it is possible few if anyone will like the numbers.

The campaign to create biometric national ID cards for all of Liberia’s 2.5 million potential voters, now more than a decade old, has netted just 605,000 citizens.

To be more specific, that number represents everyone who has enrolled in the country’s national ID registry for an ID card. Only a number less than 605,000 has registered to vote and the deadline to do so is May 11.

The conundrum could result in one of the most unusual forms of voice analysis in the world today.

In order to vote this year, according to reporting by FrontPageAfrica, people registering to cast a ballot will need a birth certificate, passport or national ID card and that is a problem.

Birth certificates and passports are harder to come by in rural Liberia, so the National Elections Commission has for some time pushed people to get an ID. In fact, commissioners had said the national ID would be the priority identification document.

And while until recently they sounded like they just might pull this off, no one in the nation seems confident anymore.

The leader of the Unity Party says he has been told by elections commissioners that they will be less than stringently requiring voting registrants to have the national ID.

But some assurances must be made, and it looks like citizens will face a highly unusual form of voice recognition.

Commissioners will listen for a Liberian accent.

One political group, the Collaborating Political Parties, told FrontPageAfrica that requiring national ID cards at this point in the registration process is as unrealistic as requiring a Liberian accent as acceptable ID.  Read More   

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