Professor David Francis is not your typical University Professor who confines his sense of Academia within the walls of a University. He parades the globe as co-chair UNESCO UK, lecturer and head of department at Bradford University, Visiting Professor at Mount Kenya University, Chairman of the Governance Transition team in Sierra Leone, newly appointed Chief Minister in the so-called government of Julius Maada Bio, and recently named acting Minister of Foreign affairs and International Cooperation. It seems the professor would lay his hands on anything that will increase his monthly wages. The professor who was mentor to and Tutor of Julius Maada Bio when he was pursuing his so called PhD studies at Bradford University, must have been rewarded with the Chief Minister position for having helped Bio attain his PhD qualification, as the entire world know about Julius Maada Bio’s inadequacies and one of them is he can’t speak proper English – I don’t know how someone can write proper English if they can’t speak it eloquently. This begs the question: Was Julius Maada Bio’s PhD written on his behalf by the Professor? In fact, I am currently investigating whether Maada Bio’s thesis for his PhD is identical to that of the Professor, and if so, will call on Bradford University to investigate the professor. If so, both these men should hang their heads in shame and do the honorable thing and resign. The professor wields so much power that the Vice President’s position in the country has become irrelevant and unnecessary. More of a ceremonial role despite the constitution clearly defining his responsibilities. But it seems President Bio has been keen on carving out a potent leadership role for the man who helped pushed him through his PhD thesis.
Our man, Professor Francis was appointed with duties as Chief Minister including but not limited to providing competent leadership for the day-to-day operational co-ordination, oversight, monitoring and evaluation of government business. After being close to Dr Ernest Bai Koroma as a member of his administration for nearly 5 years, I was fully aware of what his responsibilities were. And those outlined above as the Professors’ duties were apparently those of the presidency. But it seems our new President Bio either lacks the skill to command the office of President and sees himself academically unfit, or lacks the credibility to be head of state considering his political reputation. What seriously comes to mind is the daftness of the Professor, who recently claimed he was going to fight malaise in government including corruption and even headed a committee to investigate governance issues under the Ernest Bai Koroma administration. As a learned professor in so many academic disciplines, how come our professor decided to lend his name and reputation to a man with such a battered reputation, who is considered to have stolen our country’s money and sold our country’s passports to Foreign nationals for tens of thousands of dollars, and who engaged in mass killings and summary executions of innocent Sierra Leoneans when he was head of a Junta regime that squandered state funds and looted the state coffers with little or no remorse? Part of the Professor’s academic work must have included research and it amazes me that our Chief Minister did not do a simple research on Julius Maada Bio to know that a man with his academic background cannot be seen to be associated with a political junkie. Unless the motive of the professor was purely to pilfer state funds himself as he was recently heard in a circulated video on social media saying that it was ok to steal state funds if one does not overdo it.
Sierra Leoneans are recovering from the biggest political mistake they may have ever made to elect into the highest office of the land a man who has no respect for his wife and who parades a mistress at the party’s office passing for first lady, and a man whose reputation renders him incapable to run the presidency of this West African state. My learned professor may have one more opportunity to restore his reputation as a respectable academic by removing himself from this kleptocracy of a cartel of thieves who have suddenly hijacked the state coffers of the country and using it as their personal ATM to dispense cash for various nefarious activities, and a first lady who wields power behind the throne by taking control of all state programs to enrich herself and her husband and takes to social media to insult and put curses on those she believes are sabotaging her husband’s presidency.
The hypocritical stand taken by the professor to label Dr Ernest Bai Korma as corrupt when he himself has lost all credibility by serving under the corrupt leadership of Julius Maad Bio, gives reason to ponder his real motives. The professor must have previously encountered my articles about his new boss and how I outlined reasons why he was simply unfit to be president of Sierra Leone. The people of Sierra Leone must be forgiven to vote into the highest office of the land a man who ordered the killing of innocent sons and daughters of their country after being presented with a purely misleading manifesto as a new direction gimmick by one of the most notorious Junta leaders sub-saharan Africa has ever seen. The people had a tendency to want change after 10 years of APC rule and thought the SLPP was a credible alternative only to realize just 100 days into office what the new direction was all about, as there have been no good in the new direction. What Bio has done in 100 days has deprived him of a second term opportunity after his term ends, as he has exposed his true intentions to the Sierra Leonenan people in a short period of time.
It may come as a surprise to some of you readers to discover that the professor had somewhat worked with the Ernest Bai Koroma administration as he helped initiate curriculum development programs with the University of Sierra Leone and its constituent colleges, including Njala University, Fourah Bay College and Milton Margai College of Education Science and Technology, where he helped establish undergraduate and postgraduate degree programs. In addition, he also helped edit written material including basic textbooks through the Ministry of Education.
He and his team were also approached by the military and the police institutions in Sierra Leone to integrate components on peace education, democratic governance and human rights training, into the normal training of the police and the military.
Members of the Opposition APC party are constantly being subjected to harassment and oppression from the government, and reports of arbitrary detention of former ministers and party officials continue and properties of former ministers and government officials are confiscated as corrupt law enforcement officials are let loose to cause mayhem and confusion with ‘orders form above’. Failure by the Professor to advice his boss to apply the rule of law in his political dispensations is a far cry from the array of disciplines under his academic belt. Sierra Leone is no more the country it used to be under the government of President Ernest Bai Koroma, the cost of living has become extremely high and people cannot afford the basic necessities of life. Political intimidation has become the order of the day. Political opponents are attacked at random and sometimes killed because of their differences of opinion, People are sacked from their jobs because they are APC or because they are northerners or belong to a different tribal persuasion. Hundred’s of former state house employees are still yet to receive their end of term benefits because they are not SLPP. I am still owed salary and benefits that are yet to be paid into my account because i served under the previous government. Former presidential security guards are still languishing in detention after being falsely accused of made up charges and subject to intimidation. The professor should rise up and show his democratic credentials and call for their immediate release. Our learned man may have to keep hold of his academic ties as he may soon need them when the SLPP is booted out of office again in the next elections when he will be relocating to Bradford to teach students about the dirty politics of African governments.
The professor also recently claimed to the appointments committee in Parliament that in 6 months time he will be able to show core deliveries and outcomes that are verifiable with clear bench marks that he can be actually graded on. Sadly, the professor has already lost all credibility by association with Julius Maada Bio, so no matter what the bechmarks are – the lack of credibility only resonates failure.
The professor has in the past also reiterated that his job was to provide competent leadership. That does seriously puts into question the competency of his boss who has delegated so much power and responsibilities to him. It seems Maada Bio is fully cognizant of his incompetency – and the professor has justified reasons for his own appointment.
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