Voting starts at 7 am and ends at 5pm today. These are instructions from the National Electoral Commission (NEC). The elections body dictates this time that people should vote the same place they registered and should have their ID cards with them.

This is the fourth time Sierra Leoneans are going to the polls since the end of the civil war. NEC Chair, Mohamed N’fa Allie Conteh says the event is an opportunity for citizens to confirm their commitment to peace and democracy. He was speaking on the eve of the elections at a press briefing Tuesday March 6th.

“Voting is non-violent and yet it is a very powerful act”, he stated, adding that “You do not have to be the biggest, the fastest or the strongest to determine the future of your country.”

This time the NEC built ramps at polling stations across the country to enable differently able persons to have access to the centres. They also printed custom-designed ballots guide to enable blind and visually impaired voters to cast ballots independently.

In addition to those provisions, voters who require assistance may be accompanied by another eligible voter of their choice even as they make their mark.

The elections chief cries “Let Sierra Leone be known –throughout the world as a nation of peace”. He called on all Sierra Leoneans to leave the polling centres once they cast their ballots. Reporting by Abu Bakarr Sulaiman Tarawally

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Abu Bakarr Tarawally is a Journalist based in Freetown. He works for the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation as a radio producer. He has once served as Editor for a few newspapers in Freetown, including Sierra Express Media, The Exclusive Newspaper and his own newspaper, the Daily Express Publications. He is a teacher trainer, and loves writing and reading a lot. Email: abstarawally@gmail.com. Call +232 88601277 or +2327661303.

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