Louis Brima Conteh: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 18 March 2018:
Reports from Kambia indicate that the National Electoral Commission (NEC) has again requested for a re-count of votes in Kambia District – the same district that Kandeh Yumkella, NGC presidential nominee and parliamentary candidate for Constituency 62, won overwhelmingly by decimating the mighty All Peoples Congress (APC) in their purported stronghold.
The call for a second re-count is taking place as Kandeh Yumkella, the winning candidate to represent Constituency 62 in parliament, made a brief stop-over in Kambia on his way to Samu Chiefdom. (See video above).
It must be noted that on March 12, 2018, the same National Electoral Commission did a re-count of the votes cast in Kambia District.
Even though NEC had initially informed NGC supporters that a total of thirty-one (31) polling stations needed a re-count, they actually re-counted 41 stations. NEC Representatives decided on the spot to re-count another eleven (11) polling stations.
The questions that many in Sierra Leone – especially voters of Kambia are asking are: What is NEC looking for in Kambia? Why does NEC continue to focus squarely on Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella?
As one Kambian joked earlier today, we in Kambia, are sure that each time they do a re-count, we know our numbers will continue to increase.
Over the last one week and immediately following elections, the leadership of the National Grand Coalition (NGC) has since informed NEC and provided evidence of irregularities during the March 7 elections.
However, NEC has deliberately refused to even acknowledge receipt of three letters sent to the commission.
The irregularities with evidence requesting for a re-count of votes include: Western Area, Bombali, Port Loko, Tonkolili, Bo, Kenema and Kailahun Districts. Additional polling centers including Stella Mares School, Services Secondary School and Dawa Preparatory which are all found in Constituency 132 – Ward 446 and Polling Centres 16251, 16253 and 16255 respectively.
Despite numerous efforts by many to disqualify Kandeh Yumkella from running for the Parliamentary seat in Constituency 62 and to exclude him from the 2018 presidential elections, the people of Kambia chose Hope, Opportunity and Transformation (HOT) over more than 50 years of leadership provided by both the APC and SLPP that have left the vast majority of Sierra Leoneans in abject poverty.
However, efforts to ensure Yumkella’s name did not appear on the voter register either as a Member of Parliament candidate or presidential candidate were not just limited to the APC alone.
The ineffectual opposition party – SLPP did the same. Furthermore, NEC has also played a critical role in enabling the shameful acts of the two parties to disenfranchise millions of Sierra Leoneans who wanted change from the politics of tribalism and regionalism preached by the APC in Makeni – a purported APC stronghold and the SLPP in Bo – an apparent opposition stronghold.
As the oldest parties accuse each other of massive rigging and over-voting, and NEC’s inability to conduct CREDIBLE elections as evidenced in numerous videos, audios, unsigned and fake or photocopy RRFs, tampered TEE bags, over voting, unattended polling boxes (See above video), polling agents thrown out of polling centres among many others, it is clear that the irregularities reported to NEC and which they continue to neglect as of today are not only systemic, but widespread, and casts serious doubt in the general conduct of the 2018 elections.
What is now clear about the outcome of the 2018 elections, is that Sierra Leone is deeply divided because the two oldest parties have nothing new to offer, except to preach tribalism and regionalism.
The politics of tribe is dangerous and we must all fight against it. As Yumkella noted during his meeting with the Diaspora on March 13 (see above video), “we need to unify this country.” In fact, we must. With its “Country First” agenda, the NGC will lead in unifying our beloved Sierra Leone because it is what must be done as patriots who deeply care about Sierra Leone.