PPRC validates inter-parties dispute resolution guidelines.

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By: Abubakarr Tarawally

Political Parties Regulation Commission (PPRC), with support from IDEA International and European Union, has ended a two-day political party dispute reconciliation and validation meeting.

The meeting commenced on Tuesday 14th and ended on Wednesday,15th November, 2023 at the New Brookfields Hotel in Freetown

The motive of the meeting was to equip political parties with the Knowledge to discuss inter-party conflict through dialogue as a means of addressing challenges among political parties.

Addressing political parties’ representatives, Head of Programme, IDEA International, Dr.  Idressa Tarawallie, said the inter parties dispute resolution guide meeting was very necessary, stating that their job is to help promote democracy and electoral ideas.

He continued that PPRC exist today because the parties exist as political parties, emphasising that PPRC would not be around if the parties have not been in existence.

 He said the political parties are very critical in shaping the political process of any nation.

Tarawallie further stated that, the way Sierra Leone continues to develop is contingent on the activities of political parties, since they are the most important actors in any democratic country.

 He said whatever agenda political parties have will definitely become a national agenda, citing that in 2007 the manifesto of the All People’s Congress became the agenda for change,also in 2012 the same APC manifesto set the agenda for prosperity.

He said since 1996 to date, Sierra Leone has gone through series of democratic challenges, just like every other country, which means that people understand that those problems exits, that  is why it will be important to find entry point to solve those problems.

“What we are starting here today and tomorrow should not just stop in Freetown, rather we want it to reach the protectorate and all political party structures. Political parties have demonstrated that they have what it takes to resolve conflict, that is why we want politics to become a Civil Affairs in Sierra Leone,” he said.

Speaking about the timeliness and relevance of the -nter-party dispute resolution guide, the Chairman of PPRC, Abdulai Bangura Esq, said the brain behind the inter-party dispute resolution and validation guide is to deepen democracy within the political parties and to ensure that political parties are inclusive, tolerant and that conflict is dealt with constructively within the political parties. 

He continued that the guide had been developed over the past couple of months, with interviews conducted from political parties, to make their inputs, so at the end of the day it can help deal with inter-party conflict within their own parties.

Bangura added that often a time inter-party conflict is more intense, especially in national elections and after national elections, yet politicians spend so much time and effort in addressing- inter-party conflict rather than focusing on national development.

He emphasised that PPRC with support from IDEA International and European Union commissioned the guide, to help capacitate political parties to deal with internal conflict more constructively.

He pointed out that because PPRC didn’t have the mandate then which was why they had a lot of court cases being brought in by the ordinary members of the parties, since that was the only platform that was open for them because they could not go to PPRC by law.

“The 2022 Political Parties Act has given us the mandate to mediate between political parties or among political parties. The Act has given the ordinary members of the political party now have the mandate to come to PPRC with complaints from their political parties,” he said.

According to All Political Parties Association, Prince Coker, the meeting was timely as it will help some political parties to settle their political dispute, stressing that the meeting will only be impactful if put into practice because saying things will never be a problem, the problem will always be when it comes to power struggle, at that time many people will forget what they have learnt because of the quest for power.

Coker stated that, the meeting was very timely that is why all the political parties are fully represented, with the harsh reality of political dispute among political parties. He said if the structure had been there, a lot of political issues would have been address.

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