The National Democratic Institute (NDI)’s international observers arrived yesterday in Freetown to monitor the September 8 presidential run-off.
The delegation comprises 35 observers which include current and former elected officials, political and civic leaders, election experts and regional specialists drawn from 18 countries in Africa, Europe and North America. Nora Owen, former Minister for Justice and Former Member of Parliament (Ireland); Ken Nnamani, former senate president (Nigeria); and Christopher Fomunyoh, senior Associate for Africa, NDI (Cameroon) is leading the delegation.
A press release issued yesterday stated that through the observation mission, NDI seek to demonstrate international support from a democratic and peaceful electoral process in Sierra Leone.
“The presidential run-off election provides a new opportunity for the people of Sierra Leone to demonstrate their commitment to peaceful elections, as witnessed during the successful August 11 poll,” said Dr Fomunyoh”.
While in Freetown, the NDI delegation will meet with the
government and National Electoral Commission (NEC) officials and
representatives of political parties, civil society, the media and diplomatic corps.
The NDI team will then be deployed to all the 14 districts of the country for the presidential run-off election.
The press release noted that upon reaching deployment sites, each observer team would meet with NEC representatives, candidates, party leaders and domestic election monitors to assess the electoral environment.
On September 8, NDI observers will visit polling places and counting centres in their respective districts.
The release maintained that the observer mission will conduct its activities in a non partisan, professional manner, in accordance with Sierra Leonean law and the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation.
The team will also remain in close contact with Sierra Leonean domestic monitoring groups and other international observer delegations throughout the election period.