On June 25th, 2023, the g7+ Election Observation Mission (EOM) released their initial findings on the General Election held in Sierra Leone the day prior. The EOM monitored a total of 25 polling stations across two districts, specifically Freetown and Waterloo.
Led by Deputy General Secretary of g7+, Mr. Habib Ur Rehman Mayar, the Observer Mission worked to objectively, impartially, and professionally observe the opening, voting, closing, and counting processes. The delegation also included Chief Operating Officer of g7+, Mr. Felix Piedade, Vice President of National Election Commission of Timor-Leste, Mr. Domingos Barreto, and Deputy Director of National Election Commission of Liberia, Mr. Michael A. Clarke.
Despite some technical issues with the biometric voter verification system causing delays in certain polling stations, the initial report stated that the elections were conducted peacefully with voters freely exercising their right to vote without any intimidation or coercion. The g7+ EOM commended the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone for their commitment to transparency and accountability throughout the electoral process.
The preliminary report did, however, emphasize the need for increased civic education and voter sensitization to improve voter turnout, especially among women and youth. The report also recommended further training for polling staff and greater inclusion of women in the electoral process.
The g7+ Election Observation Mission congratulated Sierra Leone for their dedication to democracy and urged all parties to respect the people’s will. A final report containing detailed findings and recommendations will be presented to the government and other stakeholders in the near future.