Sierra Leone’s main opposition party rejects election results, calls for rerun

Sierra Leone’s main opposition party rejects election results, calls for rerun

Sierra Leone’s main opposition party, the All People’s Congress (APC), has officially rejected the presidential results, alleging “glaring irregularities,” and called for a rerun of the June 24 vote.

Incumbent President Julius Maada Bio was re-elected for a second term with 56% of the vote, escaping a run-off with the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) candidate, Samura Kamara.

However, Kamara has questioned the official tally, while the European Union election observers also highlighted statistical irregularities.

Speaking for the first time after the poll, the opposition APC said it rejected the outcome of the election “given the glaring irregularities and violations of established electoral procedures.” Reuters reported.

The opposition also demanded the resignation of election commission officials, a rerun of presidential and legislative elections within six months, and said it would request that President Bio, his wife, and a number of ministers and top officials be barred from leaving the country.

Meanwhile, Sierra Leone’s Information Minister Mohamed Rahman Swaray has dismissed the opposition’s call for a rerun and rejection of votes as the ruling party won 60% of the seats in a parliamentary election.

The ruling party won 81 seats, while the opposition All People’s Congress won 54, according to the results read by the electoral commission’s chairman.

The rejection of the results of the election by the opposition might exacerbate tensions that led to violent clashes before and after the poll in some parts of the country.

Last week, the United States, Britain, Ireland, Germany, France, and the European Union expressed alarm over a lack of transparency in the vote-counting process, as well as serious logistical issues that had impeded voting in some places.

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