Youth Coalition on voters registration sensitization
The Vision of the National Youth Coalition is to restore the dignity of all Sierra Leonean youth and empower them for a brighter future. The organization has over the years engaged youths in various developmental activities to sustain their livelihood.
For Sierra Leone’s electoral process to run smoothly and transparently, the Coalition has thought it fit to engage youths from various serving organizations to take part in the whole process. Since the Voter Registration exercise commenced on Monday 23rd January 2012, the National Youth Coalition has provided megaphones and stipends to representatives of ten youth groups in Freetown.
Addressing a colourful presentation ceremony at their Fort Street Office on Wednesday 25th January 2012, President of the Coalition Ishmael Al-Sankoh Conteh said they believe that democracy should involve equal participation for all citizens. He reiterated the fact that people have been grumbling about the inabilities of their representatives in Parliament and the Local Council, and added that the necessary changes can only be effected in a fair and transparent election.
Mr. Conteh informed his audience that since the registration process started the Coalition has realized some problems of locating registration centers and some people have to spend about four or five hours waiting to be registered. The NYC President noted that this prompted his Coalition to provide the megaphones so that it enables the various youth organization to send out a clear message about the process. “It will enable more people to come out and register, and also teach the process involved in the registration exercise,” says Mr. Al-Sankoh Conteh, and added that the megaphones will be returned after the process.
The NYC President admonished Political Party Agents to cooperate with the National Electoral Commission by making themselves available throughout the registration process.
He concluded by warning that the megaphones are not meant to chant political party slogans or promote the affairs of any political party, but rather those carrying out the sensitization should be nonpartisan.
NYC’s Tamba Deen Kamara is amongst other youths drawn from across the country to go through the Biometric System Education, he informed his audience that the system is a technology used to measure and analyze the human body. He added that in Sierra Leone the system focuses on the thumb and facial feature. “It will be a permanent registration process that will only be upgraded with new registrations for those reaching the age of 18,” he said, and concluded that the system is meant for eligible Sierra Leoneans that are 18 yrs and above.
The event was chaired by NYC’s Secretary General, Salieu A.B. Kargbo.
By Fadda Bakish
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