Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chairman - National Commission for Democracy, Dr. Abubakarr Kargbo said the engagement would be a way of finding the best possible ways and means to affect the minds and behavior of the people of Sierra Leone, especially in a bid to get them to think and behave like good citizens.
“Man was not born with innate tendency that will demonstrate civic responsibility. Civic culture is learned in a state and must be a deliberate action to mould the minds of through education in a form of audio visual means, which will take the form of messages through posters, videos, jingles, songs, theatre, etc.” Dr. Abubakarr Kargbo added.
He maintained that they would design messages within the two days of the workshop that will be circulated in every corner of the country to ensure the said objectives in achieving peaceful elections come 2018.
United Nation Development Program (UNDP) Country Representative, Samuel Doe called on voters to elect base on what their needs are. He mentioned the voters’ employer whiles the aspirants are the employee, adding that the voters should employ the right person to take the forward.
“The regimes are no longer holding permanent powers, supreme powers reserve with the people, that message can be said over and over that politicians will have to back to you after five years to get your mandate, and that is fundamental to civic duty that you are the employers.” Samuel Doe affirmed.
Samuel Doe called on all key stakeholders to come together to ensure that they prepared the ground for the important civic duty.
He commended Sierra Leoneans for the past three peaceful elections the country has held since the war ended; adding that it the country should build on that. He emphasized that the country is steadily and slowly entrenching democracy.
Acting Mediation and Programs Officer Western Region, Political Party Registration Commission (PPRC) Olushogo David said the Commission hope to have better collaboration with National Commission for Democracy and development partners to enhance violence free elections come 2018.
He highlighted that PPRC is very much key in mitigating conflict in the 2018 elections, adding; “In provided for in the Political Act of Section 2C and Sub-Section 2E of the same act on this note political parties are major stakeholders.
He reiterated that the supervisory role of the PPRC should be supported, stating that the development workshop is geared towards contributing towards the building blocks of the nation’s democracy.