On the eve of March 31st, the Bombali District headquarter town of Makeni was full of activity as voters from different parts of the country were transported the previous day to their various locations free of cost to cast their ballot the following day.
Unlike in the cities where vehicular movement was restricted on Election Day, it was observed that people were transported from rural villages to cast their votes in various polling centres – using mainly commercial motorbikes, private and commercial vehicles without accreditation from the National Electoral Commission.
On Election Day proper, we observed the process in the township of Kalangba and proceeded to Kamalo where the ruling party presidential candidate cast his ballot.
In the township of Kamalo, the Polling Centre Manager at the Saint Paul Primary School, John Michael, was arrested by the police because he was not properly accredited.
His lack of proper accreditation was first detected by Dr. Samura Kamara, who questioned his presence at the Polling Centre because he was using an accreditation belonging to one of the polling staff. According to John Michael, he was given fewer accreditations and that he distributed them to the polling staff while he remained without one. He was handed over to the police.
Responding to interview after he cast his vote, Dr. Samura Kamara expressed optimism that he would emerge as the winner, stating that elections are one of the most important activities in every nation and that electing the wrong choice could stifle growth and development in a country.