LEWISTON – Somali residents of Lewiston say they’ve been harassed in a supermarket, at a polling place and on a city street since the presidential election.

Abdikadir Negeye, co-founder of Maine Immigration and Refugee Services, said one woman was nearly run down by an angry driver who yelled at her for being Somali, NECN reported.

Another Somali woman told the immigration service she had a woman yank on her hijab and tell her to go back to her country, Negeye said. Lewiston election officials also witnessed a man intimidating Somali voters at a polling place.

Abdul Said, executive director of a Lewiston nonprofit, said a man aggressively asked him for personal information at a market over the weekend. Said said he was unnerved by the man saying it was his “right” to know.

“You don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow,” Said said.

Lewiston Mayor Bob Macdonald said he will investigate and prosecute anyone committing harassment in the city. Macdonald has clashed with the city’s immigrant community before but said he considers his relationship with Lewiston’s immigrants to be a positive one.

Members of the immigrant community in Lewiston called for Macdonald’s resignation four years ago when he said immigrants should “leave their culture at the door” when they move to America.

About 5,000 Somalis live in Lewiston, a city of some 36,000 residents.

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