Africa-Press – Sierra-Leone. The Political Parties Regulation Commission (PPRC) issued a preliminary statement today on the first ten days of campaigning for the June 24th, 2023 elections, expressing satisfaction with the overall peaceful and orderly conduct observed thus far.
Key observations made by the commission include a notable reduction in obscenities and public insults exchanged between parties. Additionally, in the capital city of Freetown, no instances of destruction of opponents’ campaign materials or obstruction of their campaign activities were reported.
The PPRC did acknowledge some challenges related to street processions, as compliance with designated locations for campaign events was not as high as expected. However, compared to previous election cycles, the processions witnessed so far have been relatively smaller, less obstructive, and devoid of profanity.
While congratulating all political parties for their decent and peaceful conduct during the campaigns, the PPRC also highlighted a few incidents that require the attention of party leaders.
These incidents include the alleged obstruction of an APC campaign activity in Moriba Town, Bonthe District, attributed to operatives of the SLPP party. Moreover, attacks on known SLPP supporters in Mile 91 led to their seeking refuge at Moyamba Junction for safety. Instances of the destruction of campaign materials of opposing parties were reported in various districts, including Mile 91 and Magburaka in Tonkolili District, Blama in Kenema District, Kabala in Koinadugu District, Kailahun Town in Kailahun District, and Mongor Bendugu in Falaba District. Additionally, two senior members of the APC party made incendiary and ethno-regional statements, threatening to disrupt campaign activities of the SLPP in the North Western Regions. Another concerning incident was the burning of the residence of Madam Diana Konomanyi, former Regional Chairperson East of the APC Party, in Koidu City. The PPRC also noted instances of political parties campaigning outside the designated time limit of 7 am to 5 pm each day.
While these incidents mar the overall peaceful atmosphere of the campaigns, the Commission called upon the leadership, members, and operatives of all political parties to remain law-abiding and cautious in their public statements.
In conclusion, the PPRC commended the professionalism displayed by the security sector, particularly the Office of National Security and the Sierra Leone Police, in their coverage of campaign activities. The commission urged all citizens to unite for the betterment of Sierra Leone, emphasizing that the country belongs to everyone.
“Let us all join hands for a better Salone, as Mama Salone pass we all,” the Commission stated.