Saturday 18th June, 2016, the Alliance for Democratic Party (ADP) with their leader and candidate Mohamed Kamaraiba Mansaray contesting for the bye-election were visiting Magbongbo and Maronkor villages and on their way back to Lunsar at about 2pm, it is alleged that some APC youth thugs on motor bikes attacked them at Magbongbo village The ADP Candidate’s vehicle was damaged; mirror smashed, his driver and some supporters on the entourage sustained injuries. Also in Kailahun, APC supporters during their campaign led thugs to the house of the SLPP candidate Mrs. Navo KaiKai at her Gbanyawalu area residence and the rival groups started stoning each other leading to Police shooting several tear gas canisters creating undue chaos in the locality. The following state functionaries Mr. Allieu Bah, Minister of State Vice President Office, Mr. Maya Kaikai , Minister of Local Government and Rural Development and Mr. Augustine Nyuma Kortu, Deputy Minister for Labour and Social security were identified as front liners in the scene.
NEW strongly condemns the level of intolerance and violence occurring during election campaigns. It is very unfortunate to note that we are still witnessing these demeaning situations that are not supposed to be part of our Political Party processes. It is criminal according to the 2012 Public Elections Act for anyone to be involved in such behavior and therefore we urge Political Parties to reframe from instigating the Youths to perpetuate violence on their political Party opponents during electioneering processes.
The Government of Sierra Leone, Political Party Registration Commission (PPRC), National Electoral Commission (NEC), Sierra Leone Police (SLP) and All Political Parties are well advised to come out very strongly to condemn thuggery, Political Violence and Intolerance. NEW continues to support an open and inclusive political space and affirms that political participation is a Right; therefore we must all allow citizens to exercise their full political rights which will strengthen and deepen our democracy.
NEW will continue to observe all the Elections and Electoral processes in Sierra Leone and report their findings to various stakeholders and to the People of Sierra Leone.
NEW is a civil society coalition comprising local and international NGOs, Community Based Organizations (CBOs) and local associations with a common objective of supporting free and fair elections. A credible election process must be transparent and free from fear. NEW has been operational since 2002 and observed many international and local Electoral processes.