Ahead of the Sierra Leonean elections, Head of Electoral Observation Mission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Dr. Mohamed Ibn Chambas, met with several stakeholders on Wednesday, on preparations for the presidential and legislative elections on Saturday, 24th June in Sierra Leone.
He was accompanied by the Deputy Head of Mission Ambassador Ansumana Ceesay, the ECOWAS Resident Representative to Sierra Leone, Ambassador Moussa Harouna, and Ambassador Dr. Abdel-Fatau Musah, ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security.
At a meeting with the Chief Commissioner of the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL), Mr. Mohamed Kenewui Konneh, in Freetown, Dr Chambas commended the Commission for its efforts and commitment to a credible, transparent and inclusive electoral process.
He also encouraged the Commission to resolve all outstanding issues, especially with the opposition All People’s Congress (APC) and ensure that all stakeholders were carried along for a peaceful and successful electoral process.
The Head of Mission also met with representatives of the Political Party Regulations Commission (PPRC) to discuss the commission’s activities including security and the participation of political parties for the elections.
He praised the Commission for encouraging the political parties to the sign the Peace Pledge on elections and helping to address the complaints by the APC against the Electoral Commission towards ensuring peaceful elections.
Dr Chambas and his delegation also visited the National Centre for Early Warning and Response Mechanisms (NEWRM) where they received briefing by the Director of the Centre Mrs Francess Nyuma. The Head of Mission urged the Centre to continue its efforts of sharing vital information and the mobilization of all parties for the consolidation of peace in the country during and after the elections.
Dr Chambas, a former President of the ECOWAS Commission and Special Representative of the UN Secretary General to West Africa and the Sahel assured the stakeholders of ECOWAS’ support and determination to accompany Sierra Leone on the path of democracy in the country.
The Head of ECOWAS Election Observation Mission also met to compare notes with his counterparts the Head of the Commonwealth Observation Mission, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, former Vice President of Nigeria, Hailemariam Desalegn Boshe, former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Head of the African Union’s Observation Mission and Mr Babatunde A. Ahonsi, the Resident Coordinator of the UN System in Sierra Leone.