Nuwaubian voting suit dismissed
Augusta Chronicle/April 11, 2001
Eatonton - A federal lawsuit accusing Putnam County voting
officials of selectively purging members of the United Nuwaubian
Nation of Moors from county voting rolls has been dismissed.
U.S. District Judge Duross Fitzpatrick of the Middle District
of Georgia signed a dismissal order last week with the agreement
of the plaintiffs and the Putnam County Board of Registrars.
Attorney David Buffington, representing the Nuwaubians, said it
was a pragmatic decision by his clients.
"They didn't see any practical purpose in pursuing it any
further," Mr. Buffington said. He said his clients would pursue
another suit if they thought their rights were violated again.
The lawsuit, which threatened to postpone Putnam County's July
primary election last year, came after the Board of Registrars
challenged the residency of 196 people registered to vote in
Putnam County. The Nuwaubians filed suit, alleging the effort to
purge them from voting rolls was racially discriminatory.
The Nuwaubians, a predominantly black quasi-religious group,
have a rural compound in Putnam County. County officials had
accused them of trying to stack the voter roles with nonresidents
to boost their clout in local elections.