By Alhaji Haruna Sani
National Political Debates Committee (NPDC), has told newsmen that ahead of the 2023 elections, the committee will be organising debates for youth, women and Person with Disabilities (PWDs) in political parties, which is set to take place in January 2023.
The NPDC is made up of 11 institutions including the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAAJ),Political Parties Registration Commission (PPRC), civil society organisations and some media outlets, among others.
While speaking at the SLAJ Headquarters, 56 Campbell, Freetown, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, Chairman NPDC said the NPDC is a body that is responsible to organize political debates in Sierra Leone, which was born out of the 2018 elections.
He said the purpose of NPDC is to implore politicians and have them obtain the culture of debate so that they can dialogue on issue-based politics rather than tribe and region.
“Today, we want to unveil our plan for the January. With support from the National Democratic Institute, three debates will be organized in January 2023 before the Presidential Elections,” he stated.
He said the three debates will be conducted young people in politics, women in politics and PWDs. He said the debates will be held on January 2nd, 19th, and 26th respectively.
The SLAJ president continues that there would be three topics for the three debaters and each category having one topic.
He said the young people’s debate which will be held between 7pm – 10 pm on January 2nd at the Brookfields Hotel in Freetown will be on the topic ‘what possible solutions will your party proffer to address youth unemployment, drug abuse instead of hate speech and disinformation and to create national security issue and national cohesion’.
The second debate for the women will be held at the same venue and time on January 19th, 2023. He said the second debate will be on the topic ’what role will your party play to ensuring the effective implementation of the GEWE Act across the nation’.
“The 3rd debate for the person with disabilities will be held on January 26th on the same time and venue and will be on the topic what will your party do to promote the inclusion and ensure the active participation of PWDs in political parties,” he said.
He concluded that they will provide a two-day workshop for the coaching and orientation of debaters on how to go about the debate, adding that one person will represent each of the 17 political parties and will speak for only 5 minutes before.