Popular Lawyer, Augustine Sorie-Sengbe Marah has highlighted the Interventions of Marcella Samba-Sesay, the executive chairman of the National Elections Watch (NEW) for the Sierra Leone People’s Party in the 2018 elections.

The role of election observers has come under scrutiny following the release of the findings by National Elections Watch (NEW), an accredited observer for the Sierra Leone 2023 general elections. The report assessed the credibility of Sierra Leone’s presidential, parliamentary, and local council elections held on June 24th, 2023.

NEW, which deployed 6,000 observers across the country, including 750 specially trained individuals, utilized the Process and Results Verification for Transparency (PRVT) methodology to evaluate the quality of the election process and verify the accuracy of the official results announced by the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL).

According to NEW’s findings, the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) candidate was expected to receive between 47.7% and 53.1% of the vote, whereas the ECSL’s official result reported 56.1%. Similarly, the All People’s Congress (APC) candidate was projected to secure between 43.8% and 49.2% of the vote, while the ECSL’s official result stood at 41.2%.

Since the release of these findings, NEW and its Chairman, Marcella Samba-Sesay, have been subjected to hate speech, including death threats.

Lawyer Augustine Sorie-Sengbe Marah, in his analysis, sheds light on Marcella’s crucial role during the 2018 elections, highlighting three major interventions:

1. Marcella challenged the APC during the 2018 General elections and was falsely accused of being an SLPP surrogate.

2. Marcella stood up against the police in the 2018 elections when they blocked access to the opposition leader, Julius Maada Bio’s, tallying center in Godrich.

3. NEW and Marcella challenged the incumbent APC during the 2018 elections, asserting that they had not won the first round and projected a run-off.

Sorie-Sengbe affirms that nothing has changed, emphasizing that Marcella is one of the individuals genuinely interested in promoting good governance and democracy in Sierra Leone.