June 24th Elections: Samura Kamara demands ECSL boss, all commissioners quit within 72 hours

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Dr Samura Kamara addressing the press, CSOs and the international community at the New Brookfield’s Hotel

By Alhaji Haruna Sani

The Leader and Presidential candidate of the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC), Dr Samura Mathew Wilson Kamara, has demanded that the Chairman of the Electoral Commission for Sierra Leone (ECSL), Mohamed Konneh   and all regional commissioners should resign within 72 hours.

Samura noted that the party’s demand for the resignation of the ECSL Chairman was pegged on the fact that his appointment was done in a manner that epitomises the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) Government’s flagrant disrespect for the rule of law and it underlying intent of the 2023 elections.

He said Konneh was imposed as the head of the commission without due consultation with leaders of other political parties as stipulated in the 1991 Constitution, adding that his independence is questionable, among several others.

“Accordingly, the APC will therefore demand that Mohamed Konneh and all other commissioners resign forthwith, to be replaced by an independent internationally accredited team of electoral commissioners who will conduct fresh electoral processes” he demanded.

Among several issues highlighted that have the tendency to undermine the credibility of the June 24th elections, Samura  cited the production of blurred and substandard voter identity cards, prevention of the registration of first time voters during voter registration, missing data in the voter registration and the state-sponsored and orchestrated intimidation and violence against voters.

While discrediting the ECSL of not be in a position to conduct creditable elections, the APC Presidential aspirant urged that the ECSL should guarantee that the counting of ballots and the tallying and certification of results will take place initially at the polling centre/station level as required by law.

He urged that the ECSL should make a commitment that tallying of votes must be conducted transparently through manual and not electronic processes in the presence of party agents, local and international observers, that his party be provided with the ECSL data management structure and proposed tallying system, that an independent technical forensic audit of the voter register be done to ascertain the veracity of the ages and identities of voters, among several others.

The APC leader said failure by President Bio and his SLPP Government to heed to the aforementioned considerations before the elections on June 24th, the  APC will live no option but to conclude that the SLPP’s intention, goal and primary objective is not to conduct free, fair, non-violent and credible elections.

He demanded that President Bio instructs the immediate release of all those peaceful APC supporters and national patriots who have been unlawfully arrested, molested and detained including Arthur Pearce and many others and that President Bio should authorize the security forces to stop intimidating APC members through searches and vandalization of property

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