It was only a matter of time for the world to witness the abysmal disintegration of Sierra Leone’s oldest political party. When you have a political organisation whose hierarchy is made up of crooks, criminals and human rights abusers, it becomes inevitable that cracks would become evident as the make-up competes for full control of the resources contributed by hard-working members, whose primary interests differs completely from those who are at the helm. During the flag-bearer-ship contest, some of the country’s most vibrant academics and outstanding citizens at home and abroad, threw their hats in the ring with innocent intentions to vie for the ultimate prize of representing their party as candidate for President in the coming November elections. Some of those who had their minds on the country’s top job, were not at all aware of the machinations that had now engulfed the SLPP party, and were too keen on competing on what they thought was a level playing field.
What unfolded in the ensuing fracas, that led to the selection of a mass-murderer as candidate, is the stuff of mafioso thrilling blockbusters, that left some of them completely broke and gasping for air as their bank balances dwindled as they succumb to the unrelenting demands for money from the corrupt cabal who run the ‘mob’ of first-class embezzlers. Sierra Leone has a history of corruption, but the SLPP while in government took it to a completely new level. They emptied the country’s coffers with reckless determination devoid of any consideration for the masses.
So, it comes as no surprise that those decent and honourable men and women who contested for the flag-bearer-ship have decided to not only turn their backs on the disgraceful arrangement called a political party, but they have switched allegiance to the only true alternative: the ruling APC, a political entity that has embarked on a master-class in good governance, and an effective management of the country’s resources which has not only started paying dividends, but has won accolades from even the President of the United States himself.
Usman Boie Kamara, one of the most distinguished sons of the soil, who everybody thought was the rightful winner of the flag-bearer-ship contest, has today officially declared for the APC. It would have been difficult for Boie Kamara to have maintained his position as an important component of the party and a massive vote-winner, considering the shambolic process he witnessed and endured in the selection procedure. Usman Boie Kamara witnessed first-hand the blatant abuse of political privilege as those who man the SLPP hijacked the entire process and played into the hands of those whose agenda to wage war on the country’s finances once again took hold, and deprived the true winner of what he really deserves. But despite what he endured, Boie Kamara was never in a hurry to switch loyalty. He thought he could give the hierarchy another opportunity to search their souls and institute a dramatic overhaul of how the party does business. This would probably have given the former Director of Mines hope that better days would come and the party would shed its dark past and embrace a new political direction.
But it was never to be, instead of organising a thorough political structure with serious intent to win, they waged a media war on the head of state and members of his government. Even top foreign diplomats on the ground worked alongside corrupt opposition elements with determination to oust the siting government come November. This diplomatic interference in a sovereign state like Sierra Leone culminated in the granting of a visa to a man whose hands is soiled with the blood of innocent Sierra Leoneans who were brutally massacred in cold blood and whose loved ones are yet to receive justice for such despicable atrocities. Corrupt journalists were hired to distort the political reality on the ground, even Julius Maada Bio himself, the current flag-bearer of the party, couldn’t help but engage international newspapers like the Huffington Post and Britain’s Guardian Newspaper, using them as a conduit to spread abominable lies and deceive international readership of what was really happening back home.
But the events of the past months that has seen top SLPP administrators in all corners of the country, from District Chairmen to former flag-bearer contestants, all queuing to become part of the change the country is witnessing from a leader who is determined to bring his people out of wretched poverty, must have come as shock to some of the country’s diplomat friends whose misguided intentions have been so embarrassingly shattered. But it does provide a lesson to diplomats like Michael Schulenburg, who up until now, is spending his precious time parading the corridors of the UN in an attempt to tarnish the good name of the president and his government, after trying everything in the diplomatic books to prevent the sitting government from securing a hard-earned second-term opportunity in office.
Schulenburg like other diplomats on the ground, thought and in fact still believe, they understand Sierra Leone politics to the point where they can influence the outcome of the pending vote. In their quest to mislead their home offices, little attention was paid to the derelict structure within the opposition SLPP. A bit of homework and research into files in their possession, would have revealed the make-up of the current hierarchy of the SLPP; and they would have learned that some of Sierra Leone’s most hardened criminals and top-class embezzlers have now made the SLPP a money-making machine with a political twist at the very center.
As he addressed a massive crowd of supporters and admirers, Usman Boie Kamara was damning in his remarks, he said the SLPP was not following the philosophy of its founding fathers, “We are not the ones saying it”, he explained. “They have demonstrated it all over the country for you all to see, so we cannot sit down quietly” The charismatic and buoyant politician then went on to say he will not be doing justice to the country if he saw the ideals he believed in were being violated and he did nothing.
This is indeed a sad chapter in the annals of the SLPP, and for those who had embarked on destroying the good name of President Ernest Bai Koroma, the events of today and the past months, is testament that the amazing development taking place across the country has not gone unnoticed. The people of the country are experiencing change no politician have to remind them about. There is visible progress despite the austerity measures the government has put in place to ensure a sound economic footing, and meet with IMF/World Bank demands. Sierra Leone is never the country it used to be 10 years ago, and has taken the path toward prosperity to make itself the country it should have been 10 years ago, when the SLPP reduced a once prosperous state to a nation that relies on promissory notes to survive.
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