National Electoral Commission (NEC) Sierra Leone Saturday released 50% or 1.3 million processed votes from the 3.17 million registered voters for the March 7 presidential, parliamentary and local council elections.
According to the official results, the candidate of the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) Dr Samura Kamara led with 43.20% followed by rtd Brig. Julius Maada Bio of the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) 43.09%, while Kabdeh Yumkellah of the National Grand Alliance (NGC) is third with 6.69% of the processed votes.
The two female presidential candidates got 0.1% each.
NEC chair Mohamed N’fah Alie-Conteh told a Press Conference at NEC HQs in Freetown that the remaining results would be released as soon as possible.
If none of the 16 candidates contesting the presidency gains 55% of the votes cast in the first round, the two frontrunners will go for the run-off balloting two weeks after the declaration of the first round results.
The winner will be the nation’s fifth president and will replace outgoing President Ernest Bai Koroma, who has served the constitutionally allowed two terms of five years each.
Registered Sierra Leoneans also voted to elect MPs for the 124 contested seats in the 144-member parliament from among 789 candidates.
An incident in the nation’s capital involving some youths who reportedly attempted to cause trouble and loot shops following the release of the first partial results of the polls, was swiftly brought under country by the security services.
The elections were the fourth set of polls since the end of the country’s 11-year civil war in 2002, but the first time that the national authorities would fully take charge of electoral processes since the departure of the UN Mission in 2014.##