September 5, 2017 By Mohamed Massaquoi
One of the flag bearer aspirants for the main opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) has called on the party’s National Executive Council (NEC) to revisit the Le 120 million candidature fees for the position of flagbearer, adding that the decision has the potential to deprive other intending candidates who do not have the financial strength to pay such colossal amount of money.
Dr. Jonathan Tengbeh made the appeal yesterday during a press conference at the SLPP headquarters in Freetown, stating that based on the current economic situation in the country, most of those who have actually developed interest in the party’s leadership will be deprived of such opportunity.
“I want to appeal to NEC to look into the fess for flag bearer position. I have already paid twenty percent of my own fees but there are a lot of colleagues who cannot afford that money. This is for the sake of unity within the SLPP. I also want an extension of time for the payment of the fees,” he said.
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Dr. Tengbeh further noted that SLPP members needed to be honest by ensuring that the forthcoming delegates’ conference scheduled for this month is free, fair and credible, adding that if only the party is to maintain transparency and accountability, SLPP will easily win the 2018 presidential election as most Sierra Leoneans are against the ruling All Peoples Congress(APC) .
“Our wining as a party is hanged on five points which includes, electing the flag bearer subsequently the presidential candidate, fund raising, preventing election rigging, fighting the elections and preparing for governance.I believed that our present party machinery has structures in place that are quite capable of handling some of these issues but we need to strengthen those organs,” he said.
Dr. Tengbeh was the brain behind the formation of the all Aspirant Alliance but according to him, the idea was misunderstood by some of those who opted to be part of the organisation.
“I believe in the unity of the party that was why I called on the Alliance but it went out of hands. We do not agree to have a single candidate because that was not the initial concept,” he concluded.