Outstanding and Independent Media publisher Dr Sylvia Olayinka Blyden, of the Awareness Times newspaper, has blasted some of the daft journalists parading as opposition SLPP media mouthpieces, and has shrugged-off their criticism and apparent use of previous articles she has written against the government. In fact, the SLPP media has in the past made it a habit of using some of the articles I have written criticising the Publisher for her persistent take on the government and the Head of State, and they continue making foolish political capital out of them. But in reality, I have nothing personal against Sylvia Blyden. It is not uncommon when journalists have different political views to play it out in the press in dramatic fashion and attempt to present each others work as unworthy. But it seems the SLPP media miscreants are taking journalism to another level: one that showcases how unprofessional and deranged some of them are. Someone’s independent approach to her work does not warrant undue vulgar and repulsive attacks on her personal life.
Sylvia Blyden has her critics, I am one of those who stood firmly and determined to stop her as she took on the establishment with vicious venom, but she has also demonstrated remarkable ideals and courage as she faced constant barrage from rag-tag morons posing as media professionals who seem to have no clue as to where the line is drawn! It is interesting that some in the SLPP media who now throw all sorts of profanity on her because of the uncompromising stance she has taken over the party’s selection of a mass-murderer as candidate, were once singing praises of her efforts to bring the government to account, but are now queuing to demonise her. The fact remains that no one should be surprised at Blyden’s independent position in the media, she had made it clear from the onset that she professes no political persuasion, and as President Koroma himself has clearly demonstrated, he holds no grudges against her. The President, who has taken more than anyone else from Blyden, has shown a remarkable and vivid example of tolerance, something lacking in the opposition SLPP candidate Julius Maada Bio, who when criticised by Blyden and her fantastic team of journalists, sent his rag-tag brigade of thugs to unleash terror on them. The clear distinction of character between the president and the opposition SLPP candidate is one reason that may have convinced Blyden that Julius Maada Bo is just not fit for purpose.
No matter what you say of her, Sylvia Blyden is a potent force for change as our country liberate itself from the scourges of tyranny, inept governance, barbaric human rights abuses and corruption, because of the outstanding effort of the Head of State, President Ernest Bai Koroma. Blyden should hold her head up high and ignore those who make it their profession to discourage progress and development. Sierra Leone is moving forward with the APC at the helm, and there is nothing the SLPP or Maada Bio can do that will change that. As Blyden herself so well noted in her recent remarks about the Head of State: “President Ernest Bai Koroma is one of the best Presidents that this country has ever seen! He makes me proud to have served Sierra Leone as a journalist under his Presidency.” It is vital that the Head of State and government ministers focus on the important work at hand, as they position the country for unprecedented economic progress, as it is indeed a convincing yardstick that the electorate will use to vote overwhelming to preserve the status-quo and keep the APC in power for another 5 years.
Sylvia Blyden’s Statement in Full:
My detractors, many of who are safely cocooned in various civil cliques, like to give the impression that I am of no significance in Sierra Leone. However the time and energy they expend in critiquing my work (overtly and covertly) speak volumes of how significant I really am in their eyes.
I am amused to learn pro-SLPP media this week resumed reproduction of my critical articles. I am told one Jonathan Leigh even dedicated five pages (yes, five pages!!) of each one of his editions this week to simply reproducing my past articles criticising President Koroma.
One, dated August 14th 2010 was my reaction to a rambling Ministry of Information Release. In it, I had debunked Government’s strong position that I was an opposition member. I opined that my criticisms are what will help to curb dictatorial tendencies (which all humans are prone to).
I have always loved my independence. I currently see myself as Sierra Leone’s most independent journalist no matter what is said of me.A good leader never HATES his critics but instead learns from them and finds ways and means of improving based on such criticism of his person. I have admired Koroma’s ability to amiably smile when we meet despite my harsh criticisms of him. He knows I meant him no ill and he knows my sustained criticisms have helped to make him what he is: One of the best Presidents that this country has ever seen! He makes me proud to have served Sierra Leone as a journalist under his Presidency.
Finally, if people want to know my true position about President Koroma viz-a-viz his democratic credentials versus his dictatorial tendencies which are tendencies all humans naturally possess, they should read my piece on Page 3 today which was first published in April 2011 (some eight months after the article of August 2010 which SLPP media are now parroting).
That April 2011 article precisely captures my current position about President Koroma. I have decided that it will be reproduced every single day for the next one week inside AWARENESS TIMES.
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