By: James Kamara-Manneh

As Sierra Leone stands on the precipice of receiving the much-anticipated Tripartite Committee Report, anxiety and uncertainty ripple through the populace. President Julius Maada Bio, in a recent nationwide broadcast, emphasized the paramount need for national unity. His call came on the heels of a significant political development: the main opposition, All People’s Congress (APC), announced its withdrawal from the Tripartite Committee, citing a lack of commitment from both the government and the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL).

President Bio’s address underscored the essential values of tolerance, respect, and solidarity, urging every citizen to work together towards a nation where all individuals feel valued and included. He specifically called upon the APC to demonstrate leadership by encouraging their supporters to embrace each other, ensuring peace and stability in the country.

The Tripartite Committee was established as part of a broader initiative to address electoral concerns and enhance the political framework of Sierra Leone. This committee’s mandate is to critically examine the electoral system, including the structures and processes of the 2023 electoral cycle, and to propose reforms that align with international best practices. The formation of the committee includes representatives from both major political parties, the APC and the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP), as well as an independent body.

Hawa Samai, the Executive Secretary of the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion (ICPNC), has clarified that the Tripartite Agreement is just one of eight resolutions derived from the Bintumani Peace Conference. The Bintumani resolutions are a comprehensive set of agreements aimed at fostering peace and national cohesion. Resolution 3, which includes the Tripartite Agreement, is focused on the electoral system, but there are additional critical resolutions addressing various aspects of national unity and governance.

Samai highlighted that the public has often misunderstood the Tripartite Agreement. The resolution’s primary goal is to constitute a committee that includes representatives from both the APC and the SLPP, as well as an independent body, to examine and improve the electoral system. This initiative aims to enhance transparency and collaboration in the electoral process, ensuring that future elections are fair and credible.

As tensions rise and expectations vary ahead of the report’s release, the coming days will be crucial in determining Sierra Leone’s stability. In this context, I implores all parties involved to prioritize peaceful relations, positive communication, and a spirit of cooperation and collaboration. The report’s significance for peace and unity cannot be overstated, but it must not be exploited as a tool to incite unrest.

Leaders from both the APC and the SLPP are urged to engage with their supporters and the general public to facilitate a smooth reception of the Committee’s report. Productive dialogues should be initiated to promote peace, unity, and understanding. It is essential to discourage individuals or groups who might incite violence, redirecting their energy towards activities that foster peace and stability.

President Bio and his government are called upon to demonstrate maturity and magnanimity, fostering a collaborative approach towards national unity, peace, and development. This moment in Sierra Leone’s history requires a collective commitment to the values of tolerance and solidarity.

The impending release of the Tripartite Committee Report presents an opportunity for Sierra Leone to strengthen its democratic processes and national unity. The path forward will require patience, understanding, and a willingness to collaborate across political divides. As the country braces for this significant moment, it is imperative for all Sierra Leoneans to find common ground, ensuring that the principles of fairness, transparency, and inclusiveness guide their actions.

The future stability and prosperity of Sierra Leone depend on the collective efforts of its people and their leaders. By prioritizing peace and unity, and by implementing the recommendations of the Committee’s report with fairness and transparency, Sierra Leone can navigate this critical period successfully, emerging stronger and more unified than ever before.



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