A Cabinet Minister in the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) party and government was on Thursday 12th November 2015 seen in a political campaign rally, instead of doing his official and state function for which he was appointed and is receiving salary from the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF); in a bid to campaign and muster support for the Constituency 107 APC by-election candidate.
Retired Captain Momodu Alieu Pat Sowe was seen on top of a vehicle during work hours rallying with Francis Kowa the APC Constituency 107 by-election candidate in a motorcade through the streets of the capital in what has been seen as a heavily budgeted campaign rally.
The Minister who could argue that as a Regional Chairman of his party he has the right to throw his weight behind the candidate, but one thing many people asked was whether he should abandon his official duty for a party activity.
Another person asked if the Minister’s party interest is of more priority to that of the state.
However, the campaign rally was very colorful with fleets of cars and hundreds if not thousands of party stalwarts displaying banners and wearing T-shirts with the inscription, ‘Na God I Will’.
The city of Freetown was engulfed in Red the official APC party color.
Around Christ Church at Circular Road, a young man asked: “Why military and other government vehicles should be used for a political party rally.
Is it because they are in the ruling government?”
It should be recalled that during the last election it was observed by the Commonwealth and EU election observers that state resources particular state media was used for political party campaigns.
However, with the huge crowd and support displayed in favor of Kowa, many observers are expecting him to have a landslide victory in the polls more-so, for the fact that his constituency is dominantly APC.
Men, women, youths and various support groups came out to show their support for a man they described as their savior.
Some supporters were thoroughly drenched by a sudden heavy downpour but this could not stop their determination to rally for Francis Kowa who is said to have given a number of scholarships to poor students among other things.
On the other hand, the SLPP candidate in the same by-election has threatened to boycott should the National Electoral Commission not allow their party agents to monitor voter registration and the electioneering processes, but Albert Massaquoi Chief of External Relations NEC said they should trust the integrity of the polling station staff so as to avoid unnecessary tension.