The honorable Justice further ordered that the National Electoral Commission registration officers should ensure that madam Yvonne Aki Sawyer, the ruling All People Congress (APC) Party candidate for the mayoral position name be transferred from Ward 369 in Regent to Ward 442 in Lumley where she now resides.
Similarly, the court also ordered that Raymond Desauza George, the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) candidate for the same mayoral seat of Freetown, name be transferred from Ward 395 at Mount Aureal to Ward 433 at Brookfields, where he presently resides.
Furthermore, Hon. Justice Abdul Rahman Mansaray made it abundantly clear in his ruling that the names of the two mayoral candidates be deleted from the previous voter register in the above named Wards and issued them with new voter registration cards that would enable them exercise their franchise in the forthcoming general elections.
He also ordered that nomination date for candidates vying for the mayoral position of Freetown be postponed to Saturday 20th January 2018 and assured that the full ruling will be sent to Counsels that represented the then Plaintiff/Applicants and Defendants later on.
Earlier, Lead Counsel for Madam Yvonne Aki Sawyer, Africanus Sesay and Musa Mewae, Counsel for Raymond Desauza George filed an originating summons to the High Court that the democratic and constitutional rights of their Clients to vote and to be voted for in the upcoming March 7, 2018 general elections were being threatened.
They argued that the presiding judge has the powers to compel the National Electoral Commission officer for the orders prayed for on it originating summons to restore the constitutional and democratic rights of their Clients, under Section (40) of the Public Elections Act of 2012 by allowing both candidates to contest for top most position in the Freetown City Council administration.
On the other hand, Counsel for National Electoral Commission D.E. Taylor countered that Barrister Africanus Sesay and Musa Mewae’s submissions for their Clients names to be transferred from their previous wards to a new voter register in the Western Area Urban District was an abuse of process.
He further argued that election is a process and not an event, and the commission cannot be subjected to mandamus in a situation where it operates completely without a legal framework in the exercise of Section (40) of the Public Elections Act of 2012.
After digesting the submissions of Counsels for both mayoral candidates and Counsel for National Electoral Commission, Hon. Justice Abdul Rahman Mansaray struck out the originating summons filed on behalf of the National Electoral Commission, and ruled in favor of Madam Yvonne Aki Sawyer and Raymond Desauza George.