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Love One Another Campaign commences election seminar for pupils

HomeNewsLove One Another Campaign commences election seminar for pupils

Love One Another Campaign commences election seminar for pupils

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Love One Another Campaign (LOAC) has commenced its series of nationwide seminars before the June elections at the Government Model Secondary School in Freetown.

The event attracted over 200 pupils drawn from 10 schools including the Albert Academy, Government Model, the National Pentecostal Secondary School and the United Methodist Girls Secondary School to sensitise first time voters on the June 2023 elections.

The representative of the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL) disclosed that ECSL has formed Electoral Clubs in schools, that voter education is important especially for first time voters, that there has been a change of the electoral system from first past the post to the Proportional Representation or District Block and that 17 registered political parties would participate in the June 2023 elections.

He continued that the entire country would be divided into constituencies, that political parties would present the lists of their candidates to the EC-SL, that those who score 11.9% votes would be elected Members of Parliament the same score for Local Council officials while for the presidential election the winner must score at least 55% of the votes otherwise a runoff election or second rounds would be conducted for the two candidates who score the highest votes.

For mayors and chairpersons, the EC-SL representative informed that the old system of election would be maintained, that the voter identity cards are very important, appealed for tolerance, that pupils must accommodate each other and that the pupils, who are the cheapest commodity, must ensure that they are not misused by politicians for acts of violence.

He continued that elections are not a do or die battle but must be conducted peacefully and warned them against misinformation and social media mischief revealing that the EC-SL was formed by an Act of Parliament in 1991, that independent candidates are allowed to contest the elections reiterating that the desire for peace is one of the greatest the country is yearning for and warned the pupils not to be used as tools of violence.

In his keynote address with the theme: ‘A Call to Love for Sustainable Peace in Sierra Leone’, the guest speaker, Rev. Clay Weah asserted that without peace there would be no development in any country, that development does not thrive in a war situation and underlined the need for sustainable peace as well as political, socio-economic, religious and ethnicity as vital for sustainable peace for the country to actualize its full potentials.

He furthered that weaponisation of political power to be used against other sections in society can be dangerous and stressed that without love and empathy, the political class cannot provide the enabling environment that can lead to unrest and hate.

The guest speaker further noted that leaders and parents must make sacrifices for the development of the country citing America and Europe with strong economies and stable societies, that although Sierra Leone has a history of religious tolerance, religion can be used to promote hate and war, citing Rwanda as a lesson when people failed to coexist affirming that love should be the driving force in all we do.

Giving an overview of the seminar, history, aims and objectives, the founder of LOAC, Dr. Christian Bell recalled that while in Germany he received a divine message from God to launch the organization 25 years ago at the British Council Hall in Freetown.

He also made a presentation titled ‘What is love, why do we love? Consequences when love is absence.’

Earlier, Dr. Nellie Bell, a member of LOAC urged the pupils to make salient inputs during the seminar assuring that the session would transform their lives and be blessed, that they would be trained how to influence their colleagues, community and the entire country.

The Presidential Adviser, Raymond D. George, a Board Member of LOAC, also addressed the pupils in a similar vein.

Group work and presentations, singing of the National Anthem and Pledge as well as well the personal pledge by all and the questions and answers session climaxed the event.

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