After all, if every economic issue is framed as a struggle between a hard-working white middle class and undeserving minorities, then workers of all shades will be left fighting for scraps while the wealthy withdraw further into their private enclaves - Barack Obama

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Reply with quote  #1 
The same Osman Yansaneh and Minkailu Mansaray who had declared Thursday and Friday Red days were the same folks seen hiding under tables in the APC headquarters in Brookfields when police started firing tear gas in that building.

Osman Yansaneh and Minkailu Mansaray are bad leaders that rank and file APC members should stop following.  They should be arrested for endangering the welfare of party members.

The chaos and stampede that prevailed for hours at the APC headquarters should be a lesson to party members that there is a price to pay for breaking the law.  And breaking the law for Members of Parliament that broke the law and were kicked out of parliament is counterproductive and stupid.

Sierra Leone is a peaceful country under the leadership of the forward-thinking president Julius Maada Bio.  He is not going to allow a band of hoodlums and lawless mischief makers disturb the peace.
Deja Vu
Reply with quote  #2 
How such toxic political atmosphere will attract FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) that is a pre-requisite to expedite robust economic and job growth to a country that has been on a perennial economic life support and notorius for political upheavals in a sub-region in Africa with a fault plane of political earthquakes is the million dollar question.

In the mean time, the non-elite in the country continue to live in penury and pauperism, even though they have the chance every five years to ditch their green and yellow blinkers, cross the tribal and regional divide and usher in a new political dispensations with untainted and unblemished political records.

It is an unwinnable snd unsustainable race to the bottom of the cesspit between the two old, good-for-nothing, nasty political parties, taking turns to outdo each other in various untoward aspects.

Umara Fofana of Politico put it succinctly in the article below.

admin's pictureTorn by turn, the nature of Sierra Leone politics
By Umaru Fofana

For some people, and for different reasons, one of the highlights of the three-day-long Bintumani III conference on peace and national cohesion was the attendance of Alpha Kanu. He was presidential affairs minister, mines and mineral resources minister, information minister and presidential adviser in the Ernest Bai Koroma administration.

Against the letter and spirit of the stated position of his All People’s Congress (APC) party, which he also served as Publicity Secretary until he resigned last year to pursue his failed bid to become the party’s standard bearer, Mr Kanu attended and participated at the conference and even made a statement. That statement, which looked innocuous, is what has triggered my writing this peace.

Harping on the point that he was there on his own accord and representing his personal self, Kanu said he had gone to “put my own views across and to dialogue with leaders of SLPP in the govt to consider APC and northerners as their compatriots”. I will return to this in a moment, but here is more of that he said:

“I have also advocated for the payment of benefits to all former ministers of the APC and ambassadors and MDAs as a good will gesture. It has been accepted and the Minister of Finance has given instructions for the payment vouchers for benefits and the activation of pensions to be prepared immediately. He assures me that the process should be completed by early next week”.

This is what I find very disturbing, and such cannot be referred to as a “goodwill gesture”. Admittedly, it came as a surprise to me that officials in the former administration are yet to receive their end-of-service benefits. This is supposed to be an entitlement! It is sickening that every administration would subject those who had served before them in such an unfair and demeaning way. Anyone in the current administration who doesn’t feel irked by this is living in a fool’s paradise. It may well happen to them in the future. It reminds me of the cavalier attitude today’s victims showed when yesterday’s victims were going through a similar situation. They included a very long list but let me just give you a representative sample of them:

Kanji Daramy served as Managing Director of SALPOST, Presidential Spokesman and he was the founding Chairman of the National Telecommunications Commission (NATCOM) in the Tejan Kabbah administration. When Ernest Bai Koroma was elected president, the man who always looked dapper ended up looking dishevelled. His survival became a guessing game. All because his end-of-service benefits wouldn’t be paid for almost two years. He even went to court. But while the matter was awaiting adjudication people intervened. It took the near deification of President Koroma and the intervention of people including journalist Sorie Fofana, who pleaded with the president before Daramy could get his entitlement paid him.

Pascal Egbenda first served as deputy minister before he was later appointed Minister of Internal Affairs in the Tejan Kabbah administration. At the end of his service, following the 2007 election, the university lecturer who is now of blessed memory, waited with agony to get his benefits paid. I lost count of how many times he told me that he had been waiting for his entitlement, fruitlessly. The last time was way after two years of his leaving office.

As I say, the list is long. Ask anyone who has served as a minister, ambassador or head of Parastatal and they will share their agony with you. I remember speaking to a government spokesman at the time to know what accounted for such, and his response was as ridiculous as it was shocking. It is no favours anyone does to pay someone’s end-of-service pay. This is an entitlement. So Alpha Kanu sounding as if the unachievable had been secured because of his intervention, laudable as that may seem, is a travesty. It speaks to the broken nature of our systems and processes where they exist at all.

More than one year after rendering services to the state no one should be pleading for their benefits to be paid. If there are issues of corruption around them let that be proved by the courts or any other mechanism set up for such. But let their entitlements be paid them. It is no magnanimity on anyone’s part if such payment was made. Are you looking for a disincentive for people wishing to service in public office? You need look no further. Many decent people who truly want to serve the public – not to steal – would rather not accept public job appointments because it is like a poisoned chalice. And you understand why.

Back to the bit about Kanu appealing for “govt to consider APC and northerners as their compatriots”, if that plea is needed then it is a sad reality. Uniting the country and treating every citizen equally is a given. It has to be so. No one should be treated based on who they voted for or which ethnic group they belong to or region they come from. Because it was the norm in the last 10 years is no justification to allow it to continue. And this is where our leaders are held hostage and left torn between doing what is right for the country and what appeases their political base, regardless of the consequences.

Last week I told you about how Ernest Bai Koroma squandered an opportunity to hold Sierra Leone together and make it enviously cohesive in the wake of his elections in 2007 and those unannounced visits to the man he defeated and the man he would later succeed. The assurance given in that meeting with Solomon Berewa was apparently trashed due to pressure on the president from his APC aides and others in his party. Like we are witnessing now, they felt it was their turn to eat.

Not long after Julius Maada Bio’s election as president last year, a statement came from State House that people appointed to Boards should not get a salary, rather would be on sitting allowances. It drew a tirade from people in his party as high up there as even its Chairman and Leader who would have been affected by such a policy which I think is the right policy. Otherwise how do you pay thousands of dollars monthly to board members – who are not an executive board – and give them a vehicle and driver when they only meet once in a blue moon. Before someone says it let me just do so by stating that because it happened under Koroma does not make it right today. It was bad then. It is bad now.

Bio apparently succumbed because of the pressure from his party. I understand the need to not want to hurt those who were there for you to ensure you won an election. But at what cost and at whose expense? I reckon President Bio is torn. Torn between wanting to do the right thing and real politic and the way that is defined here. Torn between providing the few jobs that exist and the hawks and gluttons in his party who want to have all the jobs. Torn between party and state. And in a country whose politics is torn right down based on ethnic and regional lines that only means concentrating the jobs in a few places around the country like, regrettably, it has almost always happened in Sierra Leone. That is what has given birth to the supremacist ideology in the psyche of some members of the country’s two largest ethnic groups who see themselves as superior whenever they are in power.

President Bio should unshackle himself by imbibing the defiance of his party’s last president before him. When it came to the crunch, Ahmad Tejan Kabbah wrote and even addressed his party saying he was President of Sierra Leone and not just the SLPP. Shockingly, it angered some members of his party to the extent that they started calling him names. But that was what was and is good for the state. And President Bio should man up and resist the pressure if only for the good of Sierra Leone.

(C) 2019 Politico Online

Deja Vu
Reply with quote  #3 
Pardon! Of course i meant green and red blinkers.
Abey Police
Reply with quote  #4 
"How such toxic political atmosphere will attract FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) that is a pre-requisite to expedite robust economic and job growth to a country that has been on a perennial economic life support and notorius for political upheavals in a sub-region in Africa with a fault plane of political earthquakes is the million dollar question."  Deja Vu

Deja Vu,

Enough of this crappy foreign direct investment excuse for lawlessness.  A country that does not clamp down on lawlessness does not attract foreign direct investment. 

Now, go and tell your APC Tolongbo gangster brothers to obey the law.  Next time, the police might well use live bullets.
Deja Vu
Reply with quote  #5 
Go back and read my post. Both nasty parties are clearly being held responsible.

We have been here before and we all know how it ended few years later. Peace, security and prosperity will remain as elusive as ever in that part of the world if this trend continues.

Surely, this tit-for-tat political cycle ought to be broken one way or the other.
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