ICPNC Actively Monitors & Observes Bye-Election in Tonkolili District


By Amin Kef-Ranger

The Executive Secretary of the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion (ICPNC), Hawa Samai, on the 24th of June 2022 led a team of employees of that institution to Samaia Bendugu Chiefdom with the primary objective of being present to monitor and observe the just concluded bye-election, that was held on the 25th June 2022, in Constituency 056 within the  Tonkolili district, Northern Sierra Leone.

The team arrived on Friday and met with Paramount Chief Musa Jalloh, town and section chiefs, and other local authorities. PC Musa Jalloh commended the ICPNC team for being part of the process of ensuring that peace is maintained in his chiefdom.

He said Bendugu has always been peaceful and will continue to maintain peace during and after the elections. He attributed the violence that occurred during the run-up to the elections as acts perpetrated by people he called strangers imported from other areas.

On her part, the Executive Secretary of the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion (ICPNC), Hawa Samai, intimated how the mandate of the ICPNC is to ensure that there is peace throughout the county.

She furthered that they are in Bendugu to monitor the elections to ensure that peace prevails also maintaining that after the conduct of a peaceful election what the Commission would like to follow is for the authorities to focus on development activities.

The ICPNC team also met with officials of the APC and SLPP Political Parties, diplomats and representatives of various foreign missions in Sierra Leone, including the Head of the European Union, the Netherlands and Irish Embassies, etc, members of the security sector, and other stakeholders who were also at Bendugu to observe the elections.

Voting processes were observed by the team in various centers including Folia, Kathombo, Kemagugu, Kholifaga, MCA Primary School Kaningban, MCA Primary Schools in Dangowalia, and Bendugu among others.

What was observed was that in all the polling stations, the process was generally peaceful and few incidents were reported.

The observer mission was preceded by an earlier visit of three (3) personnel from the Commission led by the Director of MEAL, Lilian Wilberforce, who had gone on a fact-finding mission to identify the causes of the violent incident in Bendugu during the campaigning process and make recommendations as to how much could be avoided on polling day.

Among the recommendations was the need for increased security personnel, a recommendation that was conveyed to the appropriate authorities by the Commission.



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