By Zainab Kanu
The Political Parties Registration Commission (PPRC) is set to go on a popularisation drive of the presidential and general elections in November, 2012.
During a media stakeholders meeting yesterday at the PPRC headquarters at OAU Drive, Tower Hill, Freetown, the Acting Registrar of PPRC, Moses Senesie, revealed that they held a comprehensive meeting with all political parties and stakeholders where they decided to have the declaration document popularised.
It was agreed that, because of the role the media play in informing the public on national issues, they should serve as focal point to help popularise the declaration document on the 2012 elections in Sierra Leone, as they have plans to work with media organizations and institutions across the country.
He revealed that they have developed the document into a bulletin format to be shared all over the country, but that could only be done with the help of the media, who have the power to inform and educate a larger audience.
Senesie said the document underscored the importance of creating an enabling environment that was free from fear, incitement, intimidation and violence at all stages of the electoral process.
The document, he further said, states that all political parties should have the right to carry out their activities freely within the limits of the State, as enshrined in the 1991 Constitution, the Political Parties Act of 2002 and the Public Elections Law of 2012, as their actions shall not be militated by ethnic, regional, racial, gender, age or religious considerations; and also prohibits the use of arms and ammunition, or materials that are used to intimidate political meetings and activities.
Senesie also noted that securing the passage of the Gender Equality Bill by Parliament and its implementation was a next step in achieving an increase in women’s representation in Parliament, and that the PPRC must ensure that the political parties adhere to the rules and regulations of PPRC by monitoring their activities.