Newly elected President, Retired Brigadier Julius Maada Bio has told the outgone president, Ernest Bai Koroma that his presidency will strictly focus on ‘national issues’ instead of witch hunting opponents.

Bio made the statement at the presidential lodge yesterday, where he had gone to meet his predecessor. He said he was determined to work in the interest of Sierra Leone and that people should not be afraid to work with the new administration.

‘I have come to assure you that I will continue from where you stopped in our development process. The politics of hatred is over. I will ensure peace and stability of the country. I believe in peace and national harmony because this is very important for our development process,’ he said.

‘When President Koroma was elected in 2012 he called on me to work with him. This is not about an individual but our country Sierra Leone. I was expecting to have met with my brother, Dr. Samurai Kamara (the defeated candidate of the All Peoples Congress party),’ said Mr. Bio.

In his response, Koroma congratulated President Bio on his election as President of Sierra Leone and noted that it was a clear decision by the people of Sierra Leone.

Bio was declared winner of the presidential runoff on Wednesday night, defeating Dr. Samura Kamara of the All Peoples Congress. He was sworn in two hours later by Chief Justice Abdulai Charm at the Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel in Freetown.

His election, according to political analysts, has strengthened the country’s democratic credentials as it witnessed the second democratic transfer of power from one party to another since the dawn of democracy in 1996.

In his short remarks, President Ernest Bai Koroma promised he would always be there when called upon by the new administration to provide support for the development of the country.