By Jariatu S. Bangura
The Sierra Leone Police had withdrawn the clearance and stopped Unity Party to go ahead with their national delegates’ conference until they receive another clearance and directives from the Political Parties Regulation Commission (PPRC).
The police came in almost at the end of the first day of the convention when different political parties were making their statements.
According to the Head of Kissy Unit, LUC Joseph W. Saffa, he was given orders to stop the event, which was taking place at the Culture Radio’s Complex so that the party and PPRC continue their negotiations process.
He said they knew the party was given a clearance, but that it was withdrawn to allow the needful be done by the party and that their mandate was for the party to follow the laid down rules and continue with their event the next day.
Secretary General of Unity Party, Adikalie Moseray Bangura said they wrote to the Police for clearance to be given for their national delegates’ conference to be held and that it was on Thursday morning that they were issued with the clearance which gave them the mandate to carry out their activities.
He said some three weeks ago they wrote to the PPRC for them to hold their convention, but they were told to submit list of ward, council, district, regional and national leaders and that the party was fighting hard to follow adhere to that.
He explained that they have conducted elections for four of the positions and submitted the names to the PPRC with the exception of the national officers’ positions.
He noted that they were about to conduct elections for national officers when the police came in and disrupted the process that was slated for two days (2nd and 3rd March).
He disclosed that the PPRC does not have the mandate to call their elected executive for questioning on how their positions were given to them, and that their mandate is to make sure political parties comply with the law that guides them and not to question executive members.
Madam Femi Claudius -Cole said she was yet to know what the main issue was that the police had to put a stop to their conference because as far as they were concerned, they had complied with the rules of PPRC.
She expressed disappointment over the act of the PPRC as they were suffocating democracy in Sierra Leone.
She said the PPRC were just given a name change and not a means of soliciting powers to control political parties.