Court to rule on Sierra Leone presidential runoff go-ahead

Sierra Leoneans went to the polls earlier this month but none of the 16 candidates garnered more than the 55% of the vote needed to avoid a second round.

A women cast her ballot as part of the general elections, on 7 March 2018 at a polling station in Freetown in Sierra Leone. Picture: AFP

FREETOWN - A High Court in Sierra Leone will on Monday decide whether a presidential runoff will go ahead as planned on Tuesday.

Sierra Leoneans went to the polls earlier this month but none of the 16 candidates garnered more than the 55% of the vote needed to avoid a second round.

A member of the ruling All People’s Congress has brought an urgent case against the National Electoral Commission in his personal capacity, alleging irregularities in the first round.

The High Court has since granted an interim injunction against the electoral commission from continuing preparations for Tuesday's presidential runoff between the APC and opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party.

But the National Electoral Commission has said it is a constitutional matter and should be heard in the supreme court.

While the first round was deemed peaceful by all international observer missions, the APC and SLPP have dominated politics since independence and violence between its supporters has increased in recent weeks.