SLPP election ends in violence


By Chernor Ojuku Sesay

Cocorioko Correspondent in Freetown

The Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) Western Area Central 1 zonal election ended in violence over the weekend at the party’s former headquarters, Rawdon Street in Freetown.

Two opposing groups engaged themselves in running battles, threw missiles like empty beer bottles, rocks and other objects, injuring several innocent passers-by and even some among the groups.

Reports gathered indicate that the two contestants for the post of Chairlady, Central 1 Zone II, known as Haja Mammah of Regent Road in Freetown and Magaret Tarasid-Tarawally of Free Street in Freetown and their respective supporters converged at Rawdon Street to conduct the elections on Sunday.

However, according to eye-witnesses, the actual election was yet to commence when supporters of Magaret Tarasid-Tarawally reportedly started to chant against Haja Mammah that she was too old for the position; that she should now give way to a younger person because she (Haja), had been in the Chairlady seat of SLPP Central 1 for close to a decade now.

The anti-Haja group reportedly vowed not to vote claiming that Haja had imported thugs and hired voters from outside the constituency in an attempt to rig the elections.

Following this development, the group supporting Haja reportally responded by hurling insults and pelting their opposers with missiles. It was then that all hell broke loose and for about forty-five minutes the stretch of Rawdon Street between Siaka Stevens Street and Garrison Street was a battle-field.

Normalcy was however regained when riot police arrested a number of people upon their arrival at the scene. SLPP authorities contacted for comment at their Wallace Johnson Street, Freetown, headquarters yesterday were said to be elsewhere attending to urgent party matters.

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