..Bio tells NEC
January 26, 2018 By Mohamed Massaquoi
Presidential Candidate for the main opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) in the forthcoming presidential election scheduled for March 7th, 2018, has told the Chief Electoral Commissioner of the National Electoral Commission (NEC) that the elections should not provoke conflict in the country, considering the fact that Sierra Leone has gone through difficult moments over the years.
Retired Brigadier Julius Maada Bio, after signing the presidential nomination form at NEC headquarters in Freetown yesterday, said the commission has the capacity to conduct a free, fair and credible elections this time around, especially when they have been opened to continuous dialogue and criticism from the opposition parties.
Bio said NEC Commissioners have the free will to conduct themselves in a more professional manner by conducting an election that will be internationally acclaimed and acceptable by all parties involved.
“Unlike the previous commission, these set of commissioners have to a larger extent been opened to dialogue. I am sure that with them, we will have a free and fair election. We have just concluded the nomination exercise and it was very smooth. I am sure the commission will continue to provide the appropriate level playing field. The nomination process is an opportunity to now go around and sell our policies and programmes including our track records to the people of Sierra Leone. On behalf of the party executive and the general membership of SLPP, I want to thank members of the commission for the good work but I will appeal to them to be neutral in performing their constitutional responsibilities. I am sure the SLPP will win this election-that is the reason I don’t want the 2018 election to be a conflict instigator,” he said.
Chief Electoral Commissioner of NEC, Mohamed N’fa Conteh, thanked the SLPP presidential candidate for going through the nomination process.
He said nomination for contesting candidates is significant to the electoral process because it is not possible for someone to contest without going through the process.
He however allayed the fears of the SLPP that they have taken into consideration some of the concerns by the SLPP and that the commission will soon address them.
“For the past months, the commission has received press statements from the SLPP raising concerns over certain things. The commission will definitely look into them and you will hear from us shortly,” he concluded.