March 21, 2018 By Patrick Jaiah Kamara
A lawyer and member of the ruling All Peoples Congress (APC), Ibrahim Sorie Koroma, has filed an action in the Supreme Court of Sierra Leone against the National Electoral Commission (NEC), Chief Returning Officer of the commission and the Attorney General and Minister of Justice.
Koroma, suing through his solicitor, Lansana Dumbuya, wants the apex court to grant him an interim injunction to restrain the electoral body from conducting the run-off election slated for March 27, pending the hearing and determination of his suit.
The plaintiff also wants the court to order the Auditor-General and/or any other competent/qualified persons/firm appointed by the court to conduct a forensic audit on the internal systems of NEC and prepare a report and make recommendations within a fortnight.
Koroma, who aspired to contest as a parliamentary candidate for the ruling APC in Port Loko district without success, also wants the court to direct NEC and Chief Electoral Officer, Mohamed N’fah Alie Conteh, to produce evidence of all registrants in each polling station, constituencies, districts and the list of actual voters at the Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Council elections conducted on March 7.
A legal commentator says the application is the latest bottleneck placed in the way of NEC and the Chief Electoral Commissioner to conduct free, fair and credible election.
It is not clear whether the court will hear the matter today, but with barely six days to a crucial run-off between the presidential candidate of the opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) and the ruling APC, the case has a potential to plunge the country into a constitutional dilemma.
The ruling APC, at a presser last Saturday, made similar demands to NEC pending the crucial run-off. Secretary-General, Osman Yansanah had also written to the NEC boss reiterating those demands.
Meanwhile, the NEC boss has reiterated in a meeting held at State House on Monday that the commission would not allow any individual to interfere with their IT system, although he conceded that he would allow political parties to be represented by their IT professionals to monitor the system.