The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) on Sunday 26th March 2023 issued a press release condemning the speech made by the Sierra Leone Peoples Party Mayoral aspirant, Mohamed Gento Kamara in a Mosque.

The press release stated that SLAJ is concerned, worried, and troubled after watching the video on social media and seeing Mohamed Gento Kamara campaigning in a Mosque with religious sentiments to acquire votes.

The press release continued that the Association condemned such messages from Mohamed Gento Kamara and also condemned the leadership of the Mosque for allowing such campaign messages by a politician in their place of worship.

It furthered that SLAJ believes the 2023 elections are not about religion, tribe, and region but said should be based on issues that can develop Sierra Leone and raises the standard of living for the people, adding that religious tolerance is Sierra Leone’s last hope as a nation stating that it is the bedrock of the coexistence and pride of the country.

Stating the Association’s responsibility in the 2023 elections, the press release stated that combating disinformation and hate speech in all forms is key.

The Association is calling on all political aspirants or candidates to be mindful of their campaign messages and refrain from using divisive sentiments for political gains as the peace, security, and cohesion of the country is a collective responsibility.

The release ends by calling on the Inter-Religious Council of Sierra Leone (IRCSL) to take appropriate steps to prevent houses of worship from being used as campaign platforms to preach hate and intolerance.

Read the press release below