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In a few days – March 7, 2018, to be precise, the people of Sierra Leone will go to the polls to elect a new president, members of parliament and local council representatives. These elections will be the fourth since the end of the civil war in 2002, and return to constitutional democratic process. These elections will provide an opportunity for the country to reinforce gains made in its multiparty democracy.
Towards the polling day, the West Africa Election Observers Network (WAEON) encourages the people of Sierra Leone to remain resolute in their quest for peaceful, free, fair and credible elections. WAEON urges the National Electoral Commission (NEC) to act impartial and professionally during the elections. Political parties and their supporters are also urged to abide by the electoral laws and remain peaceful at all times during the days leading to the polls, on the polling day and during the post-election phase.
WAEON encourages civil society groups observing the electoral process, particularly its member organization, the National Election Watch (NEW), to be guided by the Declaration of Global Principles for Non-partisan Election Observation, and remain independent, neutral, impartial, and objective throughout the process. WAEON finally entreats the media, and indeed all stakeholders to be circumspect in their actions and support a peaceful electoral process to its conclusion.
WAEON is an independent, non-partisan and non-religious organization of citizen observer groups from 11 West African Countries that aims at strengthening and supporting Citizens’ Election Observation Groups (CEOGs) in the sub-region. It was formed in 2010, and has its secretariat at the Accra-based Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana).