Walking briskly into the law courts building at almost exactly 1.30pm Saturday afternoon, Lawyer Sulaiman Banja Tejan-Sie went straight to the clerks and proceeded to file his papers on behalf of the governing SLPP.
By this time the battery of lawyers representing the All Peoples Congress who had been waiting patiently since early in the morning also went into the room.
Looking through the windows of the clerk’s offices an exchange of words took place between the lawyers and Tejan–Sie who again briskly took control of his papers and went down to the treasury to pay the required legal filing fees.
Eventually emerging from the room after a long wait, Mr Tejan-Sie addressed the group of journalists present saying “Gentlemen the Sierra Leone Peoples Party and Mr Jacob Jusu Saffa have filed an originating notice of motion against Dr Christiana Thorpe Chairperson of and National Returning Officer of the National Electoral Commission and the National Electoral Commission itself and one of the prayers in that originating notice of motion is for an interim injunction”
The court papers were then taken to the Chief Justice. Again after a fairly long wait the papers were brought back and court officials announced that the hearing would be held on Monday.
Meanwhile in a press release issued Saturday afternoon the National Electoral Commission said its attention “has been drawn to the fact that the version of results read by the National Returning Officer at the Press Briefing of Thursday 13th September 2007 was different from those posted on the NEC website and distributed to the public.”
The release stated “The Commission would like to emphasize that both versions of results are valid and are from the same source, that is the NEC Tally Centre.”
The release went on to explain that “The version read by the National Returning Officer Dr. Christiana Thorpe was a working document presented to her and other members of the Commission in preparation for the Press Briefing at 6.00pm. These results reflected 75.4% stations reported. This percentage was also quoted in the statement.”
Subsequent to this the release noted “in its bid to include as many results as possible in the results database, the tally centre continued to process results specifically from Bo district.”
This the NEC release explained “led to an increase in the number of stations reported for Bo and consequently an increase in the figures reported for Bo District for both Presidential candidates, which logically affected the percentage of stations reported raising it to 76.1%.”
“These updated figures” the release added “were then emailed to staff waiting at the Media centre to be printed and distributed to the media at the Press Briefing and were also posted on the NEC Website before the end of the Press Conference.”
The Commission stated it “would like to reiterate that results are processed as they are received and validated and that procedures have been agreed and are being adhered to.”
The statement ended saying “As has been stated, the Commission will investigate and verify the various categories of results between the 95 – over 100% turn out.”