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Election: International observation missions appeal for calm in Sierra Leone

Group Photograph of international observer missions in Sierra Leone

The West Africa Elders Forum (WAEF) and other international observer missions in Sierra Leone have called for calm in that country.

The missions made the call on Wednesday in a joint statement by the heads: Goodluck Jonathan for WAEF; Hailemariam Dasalegn Boshe for African Union; Mohamed Ibn Chambas for ECOWAS, and Yemi Obasanjo for Commonwealth.

The missions in the statement, made available to newsmen in Abuja, urged citizens to desist from inflammatory rhetoric capable of jeopardising the peace or undermining democratic process of the country.

The missions expressed concerns over inflammatory language circulating on the social media and appealed to the citizens of Sierra Leone to continue to exercise restraint concerning the outcome of the elections.

“The Heads of Missions urge all Sierra Leonians within and outside the country to refrain from any inflammatory language that could lead to violence, loss of lives and destruction of the country,” they appealed.

The Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL) late Tuesday declared incumbent President, Julius Maada Bio of the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP), winner of the election with 1,566,932 votes.

His closest rival, Samura Kamara of the All Peoples Congress (APC) scored 1,148,262 votes.

The 59-year-old Maada Bio was subsequently sworn in for his second and final five-year term later on Tuesday night.

Sierra Leone, according to the statement issued by the Communications Officer of the Goodluck Jonathan Foundation, Wealth Ominabo, has remained largely calm, in spite of heightened tension ahead of the polls.

Ominabo recalled that before the elections, WAEF mission to Sierra Leone, led by Jonathan, met with different stakeholders to emphasise the need for peaceful polls.

He said that the team had continued its consultations with the stakeholders on the need to build a consensus towards a peaceful transition. (NAN)

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Written by Tom Chiahemen

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