Following a three-day mediated dialogue that lasted from 16 October to 18 October 2023, the Government of Sierra Leone and the All Peoples Congress (APC) party signed an Agreement for National Unity to break the political impasse that resulted from the outcome of the 24 June 2023 Presidential and General Elections.
The Agreement aims to set up a cross-party Committee on Electoral Systems and Management Bodies to review the constitutional and electoral frameworks to prevent the recurrence of the impasse in the past elections. The Agreement which aims to promote inclusivity in the governance process also paved the way for the APC to end their boycott of governance institutions, including parliament and local government. The cross-party Committee is to be set up within a month of the signing of the Agreement and is expected to compete its work within six months.
The Government delegation was led by the Chief Minister, Dr. David Moinina Sengeh while the APC delegation was led by Dr. Samura Mathew Kamara, the party’s presidential candidate in the 24 June 2023 elections.
The Joint Mediation was led by Her Excellency, Aja Fatoumata C.M. Jallow-Tambajang, former Vice President of The Gambia. She was supported by a team of experts from the three organizations led by Ambassador Abdel-Fatau Musah, ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security; Justice (Rtd.) Amraphael Mbogholi Msagha, Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Envoy and Mrs. Patience Chiradza, Director for Governance and Conflict Prevention, African Union Commission.
On arrival in Freetown on 13 October 2023, the Joint Mediation team paid a courtesy call on the President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, His Excellency Julius Maada Bio. The team equally held consultations with key stakeholders in the country including the leadership of the APC and its presidential candidate in the 24 June 2023 election, Dr. Samura Kamara; cabinet ministers; the leadership of the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECLS); Civil Society Organizations and the Diplomatic Corps amongst others. The team also met with the former President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, His Excellency, Ernest Bai Koroma. These consultations culminated in a formal three-day mediated dialogue process that lasted from Monday 16 October 2023 to Wednesday 18 October 2023, held at the Bintumani hotel, Freetown.
H.E. Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union Commission, H.E. Dr. Omar Alieu Touray, President of the ECOWAS Commission and Rt Honourable Patricia Scotland, the Commonwealth Secretary General wishes to express their gratitude to the Government of Sierra Leone, the All Peoples Congress party and the people of Sierra Leone for their commitment to the consolidation of Democracy, Peace and Stability.
The Joint Mediation team urges the Government of Sierra Leone and the APC leadership to implement the Agreement in good faith within the stipulated timeframe while calling on development partners and the international community to continue to render the necessary support to the country to deepen and consolidate democracy, peace and stability.
The three Institutions express their readiness to accompany the Parties to the mediated dialogue in the work of the cross-party Committee as well as the implementation of its findings.
20 October 2023