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Kabs Kanu
Reply with quote  #1 
By : Slpp Today   Posted On : February 13, 2017

On behalf of the Retired Brigadier Julius Maada Bio, we wish to express his profound appreciation to the members of the Green Piece Initiative for their memorable Peace and Reconciliation Meeting at the Party’s national headquarters on 8th February 2017 which brought together Flagbearer Aspirants and Stakeholders of the Sierra Leone People’s Party to discuss pertinent issues and agreeing on concrete actions to resolve the current political impasse in the party.

In describing the meeting, Retired Brigadier Bio states: “The ambiance of the meeting which was characterized by frankness, respect, comradeship and sincerity of purpose amongst Flagbearer Aspirants and Stakeholders has signaled our shared and collective determination to ensure that SLPP became united, inclusive and prepared ahead of national elections in February 2018.”

On the innovation of the Peace Match, Retired Brigadier Bio also expresses his optimism: “The Match to Cotton Tree as Flagbearer Aspirants and the various speeches we made should assure the general public that our commitment for a United SLPP is now unwavering. We also sent a clear message to voters that SLPP is a family and we can reconcile our differences as brothers in the spirit of ‘ONE COUNTRY, ONE PEOPLE. I commend my colleague Aspirants for demonstrating solidarity to the Peace Process and reiterate my tireless commitment to all efforts in uniting our Party.”

In a statement that was also endorsed by all Flagbearer Aspirants as part of the Joint Communiqué on the conduct of all supporters of the respected Aspirants on print, electronic and social media, Retired Brigadier Bio calls on all his followers and SLPP members to support the ongoing peace process:

“I call on all my supporters, supporters of colleague Aspirants and members of the party to desist from all forms of personal attacks and any action that could undermine the fledgling peace we are working on currently in the party. I implore all supporters and members to treat one another with dignity and respect expected of our great Party.

“Let us now focus our conversations on extolling the values of our Party, strengthening our bonds and supporting the National Officers and SLPP Members of Parliament to hold the Government accountable on behalf of the people of Sierra Leone. These are parts of the true foundation on which any Aspirant who emerges as the Party’s Flagbearer will build on to return our Party to governance in 2018. We must all now become Good Ambassadors of our great Party.”

The End.

©Julius Maada Bio Media and Communications Team

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Reply with quote  #2 
It was always obvious that Bio would call for peace once he had clinched the flag. I hadn't expected him to call for peace ahead of that, unless he is already confident he has it in the bag. We'll have to wait and see. 

Any decent SLPP candidate should stand a good chance against this government, who let's be honest, have not met their own expectations let alone those of the nation.
Reply with quote  #3 

I know you are a KKY man.  Is a Maada Bio-Kandeh Yumkella or Kandeh Yumkella-Maada Bio ticket on the horizon?
Reply with quote  #4 
@Gilberto I have no inside information. Most SLPP supporters seem open to the idea but are still holding firm for their man to be head of the ticket.
Reply with quote  #5 
"Most SLPP supporters seem open to the idea but are still holding firm for their man to be head of the ticket."  DMK

Interesting observation.  Who heads the ticket will be the difference between SLPP winning or losing the presidential elections.
Reply with quote  #6 
This is only my opinion and is not based on scientific research but I think a Bio led ticket will be a hard sell, even with the support of KKY. APC already have all the talking points they need to take on Bio.

On the other hand a KKY ticket with support of Bio will beat almost any ticket APC can come up with.

Irrespective of which ticket stands the better chance, the question all patriotic citizens should be asking themselves is who is actually best for the country, our country. That is the ticket we should be selling.
Michael Sesay
Reply with quote  #7 

@DMK, your conclusion that a KKY led ticket is stronger is not evidence-based. It is largely emotional. Frankly it is a bit like the mistake most did for the Hilary led Democrat ticket. The socially more connected Sanders would have done better against Trump. I don't know why HC did not pick him as RM.

I am pretty certain that Bio will ultimately win the primaries... and for very logical reasons:

1. Name Recognition where it Matters: JMB has a stronger name recognition amongst voters in Salone. In other words voter dem sabi am pass Kandeh nar Salone. I must concede though that KKY adds an invaluable potency to the ticket, leading or as RM.

This name recognition comparator is bleakest for leading APC candidates - Pepito, JFK, Bono Sesay, Minkailu Bah, Kelfala Marah et al. And they have not even decided yet who will lead; and will likely have 6 months to advertise their chosen FB and mend fences.

2. A Tested and More Potent Campaign Machine: JMB has a decade headstart - with several delegates and voters - already committed. KKY came in a notch if this was an afterthought. His job to lead the ticket is therefore going to be doubly difficult. All JMB needs is a strong RM like KKY to bring on board - complimentary messaging, extra "independent" voters and a reasonable Northern vote.  

JMB demonstrated in 2012 that a relatively popular incumbent EBK at the time could only beat him via rigging and deploying rogue incumbency muscle. KKY still needs to provide evidence that his impressive Diaspora support can translate to votes in Salone. KKY is a very attractive candidate. Nonetheless, he is yet to pass the political litmus test - irrefutable evidence of actual voters on the ground. All I have seen so far is an overbearing reliance on a rather overrated Diasporan cyber activity or a handful of SLPP retirees who hardly even bother to vote on D-Day or will sleep halfway through a political rally. With a Bio partnership though, the proven release of the "Bio-Energy" will do the magic for the needed voter turnout.

3. Demonstrated Patriotism: Whilst a chunk of Bio's critics would want to shrug his military service under the carpet, most citizens who experienced the war, particularly in rural areas have not forgotten his valor and demonstrated willingness to die for his nation. He also handed over to a civilian government in record time when the trend at the time was for soldiers to hug power at whatever cost.

To be continued...

Kamarainba and SLPP
Reply with quote  #8 
Name recognition? What have you been smoking? Bio has absolutely no chance because of the tribal divide. Sad but it is the stark reality on the ground. Most Northerners will vote for any one on the Ballot except Bio while most South-Easterners will flock behind him of course.  Only the courting of Kamarainba could give him more odds. Mark my words. Failure to do that will give only outcome, an APC-led Government.
Reply with quote  #9 
@Michael Sesay, I concede that my contention that a KKY led ticket would be stronger than a Bio led one is not evidence based. In fact I actually stated that it was an opinion not based on any scientific research. However having said that, there are a number of safe assumptions we can make based on 'anecdotal evidence'.

1) If the SLPP leadership is fully united behind it, then almost any SLPP ticket would sweep the South and East

2) APC have made some inroads in the Southeast so sweeping that region alone will not be sufficient to someone into State House

3) The question therefore becomes which ticket would do best in the North and West

4) A KKY led ticket would outperform a Bio led ticket in the North based on the best evidence we have available e.g. the fact that KKY has roots in the North, Bio's performance in the North in 2012, Northerners holding Bio responsible, however unfairly, for the actions of NPRC etc.

There is no doubt Bio is popular within the Party. I respect the way he has transformed himself from a military leader to a civilian one while maintaining significant support. However the primaries are meant to identify the best candidate for the national elections. They are not meant to be an internal beauty contest.

You are right that APC may be leaving it too late to identify a flag bearer if we assume the Pa will not pull a fast one and run again. However I would say KKY has done a fantastic job of making his name known throughout the country in such a short space of time. I don't believe Bio now has more name recognition than he does.

The ultimate question though is which of these gentlemen would do a better job of transforming the country. You sound like someone who has been involved in interviewing and employing new staff. If you were to put together a job description and person specifications for the presidency, what would you put in them and which of the flag bearers would best meet all your criteria?

disclaimer: the views expressed in this post are mine and are in no way intended to represent the views of KKY and/or his team
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