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Sunday, July 3, 2022

President Bio’s flag-bearer position is illegal -Says Stephen Sahr Mambu

By Alfred Koroma

Stephen Sahr Mambu has condemned President Julius Maada Bio’s nomination as flag bearer of the Sierra Leone Peoples’ Party (SLPP) for the 2023 election, branding it as ‘improper, non-transparent, illegal and undemocratic.’

Mambu was one of the many people who had intended to vie for the flag-bearer position of the ruling SLPP but was not given the opportunity to do so.

Mambu was speaking to journalists in a press conference yesterday at the SLAJ’s Harry Yansaneh’s Hall, Freetown.

SLPP held their delegate convention in December last year and automatically declared President Bio flag bearer to seek re-election in 2023. After his confirmation, President Bio assured membership and supporters of the party that he will win the next presidential election in the first ballot and without going for runoff.

But the President’s flag bearer confirmation during the convention purposely meant for election of the party executive is now being questioned. He was nominated by Prince Harding, Chairman of the Party and confirmed flag bearer without election, depriving potential aspirants the opportunity to present their candidacy for the delegates to decide.     

According to Mambu, the move to use the convention to confirm the flag bearer position was premature and unconstitutional.

All candidates should have a chance to offer their visions of leadership individually, and delegates allowed to freely and democratically vote for the candidate of their choice.

“That’s what government of the people is …not pre-ordinated results but a chance to for delegates to consider what they think best for the people they represent,” Mambu told the press.

Stephen Sahr Mambu is definitely calling for a new delegate election, declaring the results of the last SLPP delegates election which he believed was deeply flawed, ‘null and void.’

Much of the SLPP big names in the PAOPA circle that led the party in to the 2018 victory were re-elected in that convention.

He further took a quick swipe on the party chairman, Prince Harding who has been battling a murder case involving his security personnel shooting his driver. Mambu said the Chairman’s decision to nominate the President Bio was a ‘downright criminal act’ and a ploy to avoid prosecution for his allege involvement in the murder.

But again, the nomination and election of President Bio was undemocratic and lawless, Mambu reiterated, urging the press to help bring light to the story behind the President’s nomination.

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