It was the final weekend before Election Day. Mereda Davis Johnson and George Turner are vying for the 5th District seat on the DeKalb County Commission. They are the last two candidates in the race, having survived the June 16th special election. It’s the former seat of interim DeKalb County CEO Lee May. He has been in that position since 2013, when he was appointed by the governor following Burrell Ellis’ indictment on charges including corruption. Ellis was sentenced last week following a second trial in the case.
Both Johnson and Turner question why the county is paying to investigate corruption in county government when there are four others already going on.
“We have to have transparency and we have to have oversight”, says Johnson. She adds, “We have to have someone on the commission who is looking after taxpayer dollars.” Johnson says that she is that person.
Turner says that he doesn’t like to see anyone caught up in corruption. “If he’s guilty, then yes, we shall pay”, but Turner says, “sometimes we stretch a little bit too far.” As for what it all means to Dekalb, Turner says, “it’s not going to be over until those other investigations are complete.”
In the June 16 special election, Johnson received 27.21 percent of the vote, Turner received 15.94 percent, making them the last two standing in the election which started with a field of ten candidates.