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“We are on top of security ahead of the 2023 elections…” Sierra Leone Police assures citizens

HomeNews“We are on top of security ahead of the 2023 elections…” Sierra...

“We are on top of security ahead of the 2023 elections…” Sierra Leone Police assures citizens

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The Sierra Leone Police (SLP) has assured the public that the ‘force for good’ under the umbrella of the Office of National Security (ONS) is on top of the security situation in the country ahead of the June 24th national elections.

Inspector General of the Sierra Leone Police, William Fayia Sellu said: “We are working in close collaboration with other security apparatus under the ONS, and we are up to the task of providing security for the people of this country before, during, and after the elections, and always. There is no need to panic.”

He made this assurance following the alleged shooting of police officer, ASP Mathew Moiwah Gbanya on 8th April 2023 in the Northern Headquarter town of Makeni with a bullet to his neck allegedly from close range by an unknown assailant.

The ruling and opposition political parties, media bodies, human rights institutions and civil society organisations across the country have condemned the alleged shooting and killing of the police commander and expressed concerns about the general safety and security of everyone as the country heads into its 5th democratic elections in June 2023 since the civil war ended in 2002.

“This is a very worrisome situation developing in our country. If police officers become targets, then nobody is safe in this country. I am also concerned about the safety and security of journalists covering the elections. We all need a safe and conducive environment to participate freely in the elections,” the SLAJ President, Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, was quoted in the Association’s press release.

However, IG Sellu said while the police welcome the public condemnation of the shooting of the police officer and would acknowledge that a threat to security in one region is a threat to the security of other regions of the country. IG Sellu said the Police will continue to engage all political parties and Elections Management Bodies in maintaining and preserving the peace of the country. He urged political parties to request police for assistance whenever they have meetings and other functions that should be policed, rather than depend on private security.

“As a police force, we are charged with the responsibility to safeguard everyone, irrespective of your political affiliation, and we are determined to maintain that,” he said.

“Sierra Leone is generally peaceful and safe as people are going about their normal business. There is no cause for alarm. We have launched a full-scale investigation into the incident and we will soon apprehend the culprits to face the law.” IG Sellu assured.

In another development, the Operations Team of Waterloo Division conducted intelligence-led raids on two (2) large drug cartels at Kosso village, Waterloo, that hosts hundreds of drug dealers and users.

Though no suspect(s) and/or exhibits were arrested as the suspects fled into the nearby bush, however, the Operations Team succeeded in demolishing the makeshift structures frequented by the drug dealers and users.

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