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20 Sep, 2023 14:33

Sierra Leone’s democracy under threat – activist to RT

Abdul Fatorma expressed concern after the country’s president accused the US of election interference
Sierra Leone’s democracy under threat – activist to RT

Alleged US interference in Sierra Leone’s elections poses a grave threat to the country’s democracy, Abdul Fatorma, who heads up the UK-based Campaign for Human Rights Development International, told RT on Tuesday.  

“If the allegations are true, then they’re very serious threats to democracy,” Fatorma claimed. He believes that the US has a problem with “the transparency part of the tabulation of the result and also the European Union.” 

The US has been accused of pressuring Sierra Leone President Julius Maada Bio with the aim of influencing the outcome of his country’s June 24 election. 

During a speech event at American University in Washington DC on Friday, Bio said that “when the elections were at the height of calling the results ... this is when the problems started.” 

He claimed that the Election Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL) “had done all their calculations, collations, all the processes.” “I was now requested to stop them from calling the result of the US,” he added.   

According to Sierra Leone’s president, he declined to do that because the ECSL is “an independent, semiautonomous body.” 

Despite criticism from both the opposition and international observers, Bio was re-elected for a second term with 56.17% of the vote.

Accusations of US interference in African elections have surfaced in the past. Although there is no direct evidence of US involvement, in the 2018 Zimbabwe elections opposition candidate Nelson Chamisa demonstrated his preference for the US and his campaign was closely associated with US election observation institutions such as the National Democratic Institute (NDI).