Sierra Leone presidential aspirant Alie Kabba Speaks about political violence 

Alie Kabba

Sierra Leone Telegraph: 6 July 2016

Alie Kaaba 2Fellow Sierra Leoneans.

Political Violence is threatening to derail Sierra Leone’s fragile democracy.

Disturbing reports from Constituency 001 in Kailahun District, indicate a rapidly deteriorating situation ahead of the July 9th by-election.

People have been brutally assaulted and normal life has been generally disrupted. It is reported that many local leaders of the opposition SLPP spent last night in hiding.

This appears to be a rational, even if a temporary response to a situation in which the governing APC party has a singular monopoly over the instruments of coercion, intimidation and repression.

Political violence is a crude voter suppression strategy employed by an unpopular regime to deny victory to opposition candidates.

I witnessed this phenomenon as a young activist during the era of APC one-party dictatorship under the late Siaka Stevens.

In recent times this foul strategy is being pushed to centre stage wherever the government has been rattled by the rise of a wave of popular opinion that seems set to sway votes in a different direction.

Pre-election violence in Sierra LeonePolitical violence is very bad for the health of our democracy. It undermines trust in government; it breeds a climate of authoritarian rule; and, worse, it bleeds the soul of the nation by its corrosive effect on all institutions, including the police and army, with incalculable implications.

Whatever the reasons for the mounting tension and unacceptable escalation of virulent partisanship, the Alie Kabba Campaign is calling on all actors in the unfolding drama to return from the abyss and engage on common grounds of peace, tolerance and respect for the will of the people.

We condemn all forms of political violence, for our democracy will remain precariously fragile if we allow political violence and thuggery to determine the outcome of elections in Sierra Leone.

The international community is watching us as we inch our way closer to national elections in 2018.

Eid Mubarak from Alie KabbaThe choice is ours to play by the rules of democratic engagement and gain the respect of all, or reverse the proud example we set as a nation when the SLPP peacefully handed over power to the then opposition APC party in 2007.

Let’s keep faith with our commitment to democratic principles of governance, including peaceful elections and unfettered access to the ballot. In this direction, everyone, especially the government in power, has a responsibility far beyond the here and the now.

It is a responsibility that must be taken pretty seriously because it hinges on the very survival of our democracy, and the ultimate stability and progress of our nation!

One Country, One People!

Your Humble Servant,

Alie Kabba

11 Comments

  1. Mustache Moustache, responding to your comments addressed to me:

    I want to thank you so much for the two separate segments of your comments directed at me and others (I am not sure who you referred to as others) on one part; and that specifically directed at me on the other. Oh! what a great job, well done. You have indeed done me a great favour.

    Before I properly engage you this time round, I would like to assure you that I personally have great respect for all including yourself that contribute in writing on this medium, and have never unnecessarily been rude to any.

    On the contrary, you have always taken pleasure in being rude to me in particular and to many others because we resist toeing your line of thinking. I am particularly bringing this to your notice today in the hope that you refrain from being rude to me and to conduct yourself when you write your comments on public forum.

    We should all be seen to behave like adults and responsible people. I want to particularly refer you to your comments in the article (Sierra Leone presidential aspirant Alie Kabba Speaks about political violence by Alie Kabba on 6 July 2016.) which reads quote unquote: “Let me begin by first making a couple of corrections on your grammatical errors as follows.”

    Quoting my earlier sentences:

    “A daddy, it may be too late to come due to my absent/absence from the media but certainly worth responding accordingly to your misguided statement in response to my piece.”

    “If you as a person or an individual who cannot see the qualities I have associated to/with Maada and Mr. Kabba, does it mean that those qualities does/do not make part of their humans?”

    Your conclusion or verdict:

    “Note: While both are acceptable, but “associated with” is superior. I ask that you fill your Tabula rasa or blank headed slate with this piece of information. OK?

    Professor of grammar, may I demand to know ‘WHERE I WENT WRONG GRAMMATICALLY IN THOSE COMMENTS’ so that I can learn from your English grammar proficiency?

    One would even wonder why so academia. Some of us do not believe in writing jaw breaking words to impress on the public of our intellectual standing. I can only remind you that you aren’t competent to correct my English language. I went to a better school and universities. But this forum is not for that.

    Remember, there is only one thing I certainly admire about you most. That is, your resilience to, but always in desperate appetizing mood to restore the damaged and lost integrity of your man Dr. KKY following all the damning and diabolical revelations/discoveries about this former International Civil Servant.

    Equally also, I want to remind you that I have great fun memories of my/our Ngor/Kortor/Maada the late Paramount Chief Alhaji Bai Shebora Yumkella II of Samu Chiefdom, Kambia District. He was a great man illustrious son of this great nation with excellent moral character and integrity, a product of our beloved alma mater “The Bo Government Secondary School” and a founding member of our Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) till his demise. May Allah be pleased with him and all the faithfully departed.

    Taking the above into consideration, I now wish to respond to your entire comments, particularly on how much I knew the Late Kortor referenced above, and in relation to your candidate Dr. Yumkellah the son of this great man, who happens to be completely a different person both in character and in deeds from that of his late father as far as my knowledge could serve me.

    But firstly, I want to acknowledge your direct comment to me and to note also all that you catalogued about this ‘Academic Doctor’ you referred to as KKY in short; his birth place, education, work life and other achievements etc, etc. At the end of this resume you came up with this QUESTION quote: ‘How about your candidate, Julius Bio? ‘Let us know, if you are at all a serious person to be heard!’

    My simple reply to this question is:

    My candidate Rtd. Brigadier Julius Maada Bio is the only suitable candidate that can win the 2018 Presidential election on the ticket of ‘The Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP)’ and relegate the APC regime to the dust bin forever, courtesy of all the reasons I had provided in many, many other articles in the past in this medium and other mediums and recently to Alan Luke’s article “An open letter to the leaders of the Sierra Leone opposition SLPP – a rejoinder” on whose behalf, I suppose, you are acting, so to speak. I certainly do not have time to repeat myself again.

    Furthermore, you recall sometime ago your candidate Dr. KKY by his own confession on a radio interview said to the people of this country that he has never registered with any political party nor had he voted before in any general elections in this country.

    Shortly afterwards, this same candidate came back to say again that he was a fully paid up registered member of the SLPP, in complete contrast with his previous radio interview. To this, he claimed to have registered with the party in Bo, in the US and in the UK branches of the party.

    After thorough investigations, this turned out to be a deliberate misrepresentation of the facts. It was finally concluded that your candidate was not telling the truth about his membership. As a result, and to put an end to this saga, your candidate volunteered to register himself as a member early this year. Ludicrous.

    This behavior of your candidate clearly demonstrates the difference between him and his father who was a very honest man, as far as I knew and heard about him. For this singular dishonest behavior of your candidate, the party had every right to in the first place stop him from registering with the party early this year.

    He must count himself lucky secondly for holding his meeting at the party headquarters, Unity Hall in the midst of his membership saga well before his formal registration with the party as a non member at the pleasure of our Chairman and Leader who flouts every rules of our party Constitution.

    In addition to this, you will recall sometime ago, your candidate came into this country with unacceptable ammunition and a mercenary who were intercepted at the Lungi International airport and later to the CID headquarters for further investigations, all in his desperation to become the flag bearer of the SLPP – the rest is history.

    You need not ask me to give you the outcome of this. This is another difference between him and his father who was not the human being that was desperate and hungry for power. He was never involved in terrorist activity even when they were oppressed by the APC arbitrarily imprisoning them at both Pademba road maximum prison and sometime at Mafanta for their loyalty to the SLPP.

    None of them engaged in any terrorist act in those days. They only got crossed with those members who were constantly engaged in trying to destroy their party. But the KKY that we see is completely different not only from his own father as attested earlier but also from all the other Aspirants in this contest not even in his ‘Alliance’ team.

    With respect to the Ebola issue, your own account of it is short of much credible information. I refer you back to my earlier documented analysis of the role and support from Maada Bio starting from the time of the outbreak of the deadly disease to the time he did his nationwide sensitization tour.

    Every activity and contributions both financially and in kind by this singular man are on record in the public domain. You do not need to pay to access this information, it is absolutely free. I do not have time to go on tabulating this again am afraid.

    More importantly, I do not have time to begin to compare Maada’s activities or support that he provided to the victims and families of the Ebola scourge with anyone in our party. I can do so on the side of the ruling All People’s Congress with anyone in our party.

    With regards to family background/academic/work related matters, I don’t think I would want to comment on this, because it is very personal and private. But like I said before, all of these are already in the public domain. I do not see the need for such subjects as one for further debate.

    Finally, comments to my piece from you and those by many other contributors to this medium are a clear demonstration that I am taken by all as a very serious person, otherwise no one would have bothered.

  2. Mohamed Koroma,

    Let me begin by first making a couple of corrections on your grammatical errors as follows:

    “Adaddy, it may be too late to come due to my absent/’absence’ from the media but certainly worth responding accordingly to your misguided statement in response to my piece.”

    “If you as a person and individual cannot see the qualities I have associated to/’with’ Maada and Mr. Kabba does it mean that those qualities does/’do’ not make part of their humans?”

    Note: While both are acceptable, but “associated with” is superior. I ask that you fill your Tabula rasa or blank headed slate with this piece of information. OK?

    For your information, I was among those students who on March 1991 suspended the NUC second term exams, went to Freetown to rally fellow colleagues at FBC and courageously demanded the end of Late JS Momoh’s APC one-party rule. And asked the government for the restoration of multi-party democracy in Sierra Leone, which became effective months later, specifically in October 1991.

    I can still see in my eyes then NUCSU President, Abdulai Bun Wai, and Secretary General, Patrick Fatoma, appealing to everyone in this regard at the FBC amphitheater.

    As a matter of fact, we the students of NUC had to painfully pay the price for our political action by taking the third term exams ahead of second term. Many students failed that year.

    That aside, ugly developments were reflected in a palace coup within the NPRC administration on January 1996. Julius Maada Bio, who is my uncle’s neighbor in Tihun village, forcefully took power out of the hands of Rtd. Cpt. Valentine Strasser and formed the Reformed National Provisional Ruling Council (RNPRC) for barely two months i.e. from January to March.

    “Maada Bio claimed that Strasser’s removal occurred because the latter was opposed to a return to electoral politics, but Bio’s ‘own subsequent statements and moves’ suggested the contrary. Mounting pressure from civil society ensured that elections were held in 1996 and the NPRC handed over controls to the elected leader, Ahmed Tejan Kabbah.”

    See “Historical Dictionary of Sierra Leone by C. Magbaily Fyle” page 141.

    As for the ‘Alliance’ argument, I ask that you take a look at this article:

    “SLPP Presidential Aspirant Heaps Praises On President Koroma” by Melvin Tejan-Mansaray, and see Mr. Alie Kabba seated next to SLPP Chairman Chief Sumano Kapen at the high table.

    Finally, I have made available ALL the reasonable facts, unequivocally, in support of Julius Maada Bio-Idi Amin Dada comparison. It is for you to believe or not. The option or choice is yours. The ball is in your court. Amen.

  3. Adaddy, it may be too late to come due to my absent from the media but certainly worth responding accordingly to your misguided statement in response to my piece . I can see you are very confused by your own admission and for which I do sympathize with your conscience. My statement referred is/was quite direct and I still stand by it. This in itself demonstrates my optimism.

    When you said ‘we’ in your sentence I quote “…….. the qualities…….. are not what we have seen in Maada or his supporters”. My question is who are you referring to as ‘WE’? If you are replying to my piece on behalf of Mr. Kabba, did you have the common sense to in the first place take a brief from him (Mr. Kabba)? If you as a person and individual cannot see the qualities I have associated to Maada and Mr. Kabba does it mean that those qualities does not make part of their humans?

    I can see you quite petty and even ungrateful. But perhaps on a more serious note should I say your memory box is empty. You cannot remember who pursued our war to the end. You cannot remember when Maada became President of this country?

    You cannot still remember how he took over power from Strasser and what he did after a few months for the sake of democracy and wishes of the people of Sierra Leone including your very-self if you are one of us? Don’t you know the road to Ghana. If Maada took your money to Ghana as you alleged won’t you go and bring it so that you build the world mansions or do the same as ‘Adebayor’? END

    For Mustache , I have been following almost all of your writings and contributions to this media and can only conclude by saying that none of it has ever been helpful to our party – The SLPP. Your comments are all geared towards hatred for one another and the continuation of hostilities in our party.

    Some of us are quite averse to your objectives. When people are trying to bring peace into our party you must not be seen to be inciting people against another. While mindful of your right to your opinions, you must also confine yourself or your comments within decent practice.

    Let me remind you that we have never had an Idi Amin or a semblance of him in this country. Perhaps you need to take some tutorial classes on Idi Amin Dada as a subject before you can dare compare him to Maada Bio or anyone the world over.

    I know within your conscience you are not convinced about your comparing Idi with Maada. This could be coming from your hatred for Maada without regard to what the perception of those who read your writings would hold on you. All that you care about is to make statements that are defamatory about Maada.

    Secondly, Alie Kabba is not a member of any Alliance Group. He does not need Alliance membership to be elected as Flag bearer in our party. He is a man of decency, peace, patriotic and a democrat. To support my argument let me refer you to Abdul Brima’s comment above, but specifically quoting Alie Kabba, thus: As Alie Kabba himself has been quoted as saying: “I am a part of anything that is for peace; I am not for anything that is against anyone”.

    If you disagree with this, you are at liberty to meet Alie Kabba and inquire from him if you have the gut. If we are to go by this statement, then Alie Kabba cannot and will not be a member of any group be it alliance or otherwise. REASON: NONE OF THEM ARE FOR PEACE. THEY ARE FOR DESTROY. Does this cap fit them?

  4. The Alie Kabba campaign continues to be unwaveringly guided by the worthy principles of inclusivity and the far-reaching values of the patriotic vision championed by Alie Badara Sanjan Kabba.

    There is no “alignment” here beyond the people’s platform. That is the position that will only shift to include everyone not exclude anyone.

    As Alie Kabba himself has been quoted as saying: “I am a part of anything that is for peace; I am not for anything that is against anyone”.

    That is the sort of bold thinking that rightly diminishes the cultivation of individual personality cults and emphasises the NEEDS OF THE 99%.

    Looking at the sad state of our continent, it is pretty obvious that real visionaries who are wise enough to produce a far-reaching practical plan to which they are seen to be bravely committed are a rare breed. And anytime they come around and are embraced by their nations, they always make a difference that lasts for decades.

    Any legacy that leaves a positive mark on the land and in the lives of the people is something worth celebrating.

    That is what Alie Kabba represents. He is a committed pan-Africanist and an unquestionable patriot who is far from being your business-as-usual politician. He KNOWS exactly what is needed to fundamentally change our country, and take it in the very right direction.

    And he has proven that he is a consistent fighter who is brave enough to tear down the barriers that keep the ordinary people as dismissible outsiders in their own country.

    My hope is that the majority of our people will come together to recognise this rare opportunity to really and truly change the nature of our politics and the destiny of our country, forever.

  5. Good comments, Mohamed. This is a serious and genuine advise given by you for the attention of Alie Kabba. I hope he will listen and act accordingly.

    Political Violence especially in Kailahun is triggered by the APC. This cannot be done in their stronghold Makeni to see a member of SLPP attacking a member of the APC. They want to practice it in Kailahun because they feel that they are controlling the army and the police.

    APC will never win an election in Kailahun especially in Constituency 001. Even if they bring violence, it will just be at the detriment of the poor civilians who are defenseless. Making roads in Kailahun township is not a condition for winning elections. It is their duty to ensure that roads are constructed in all parts of the country.

  6. Write and say whatever you want. But, by every indication, Sierra Leone just does not need another “Idi Amin Dada” in the person of Rtd. Brig. Julius Maada Bio, with mischievous marital status and unbelievable political baggage, to be her president in this critical 21st century. For he has been warned before with a yellow card in the 2012 presidential elections. And now RED!

    No way at all to his illicit, ambitious and ugly political fanfare. His youtube explanation as to why he ousted Cpt. Valentine Strasser says nothing but power hungriness.

    Was it he Julius Bio as then brigadier with an AK 47 or the people’s democracy that decided who to rule them?

    And because it didn’t happen then, it’ll not happen now, even though he has mutated deceptively in a civilian suit.

    Mr. Alie Kabba is already part of the Alliance of All Aspirants (AAA), which also includes the classic and magnificent erudite Chief Alhaji Dr. Kandeh Yumkella as the NEXT Commander-In-Chief of Sierra Leone.

    Conclusively, the fact that the international community, including the International Criminal Court (ICC), is closely watching and monitoring events unfolding in the country means criminally minded people need to be very careful with their subsumed political actions. Or else they will soon be held accountable and put behind bars for the rest of their lives. Amen.

  7. While it is important for frontline politicians to address the issue of violence in our national politics, it should be tackled with frankness and candid approach, above all with sincerity. With such approach we can locate the root cause of this uncivilized behavior and put an end to it.

    We experienced thuggery and violence in party politics in this country during the Siaka Stevens regime, when the people were terrorized by APC militias, and opponents intimidated by party militants. Those days are gone. The current APC government gained power without resorting to the politics of violence. The SLPP relinquished power in 2007 peacefully.

    In recent times we have witnessed violence taking toll within the SLPP rank and file, some party militants becoming unruly and waging violent actions against opponents. Violent events within the party speak for themselves. This means the SLPP seem to be treading on the same path as the APC.

    Therefore, there is the urge for both parties’ leaderships to sit together in good faith to address the issue of violence in party politics in the country.

    It strains ones’ understanding and imagination that Kailahun, one of the bastions of the SLPP would be attacked by APC militants – with SLPP candidates fleeing away. I am not putting to question this fact, I cannot just imagine it.

    All said and done, both the APC and SLPP harbour violent militants in their rank and file. This is a question of national concern.

  8. Dr. Alie Badara Sanjan Kabba has indeed demonstrated on countless occasion that he does not only have all it takes to provide good leadership for our beloved country Sierra Leone, but that he is also a very decent politician.

    I have closely followed his campaign messages since he declared his intention to run for the leadership of our great party. His messages have always been centred on issues of national concern, not on the personalities of his colleague flagbearer aspirants.

    The SLPP delegates that will be casting their ballot in the forthcoming national delegate conference should make sure that tribal and regional sentiments do not override their rational judgement. Make no mistake, Dr. Kabba has distinguished himself as a very vibrant opposition.

    Where are the other flagbearer aspirants, in the likes of Maada Bio, JOB, Andrew Kiellie, Alpha Timbo, Munda Rogers, and others?

    I only hope they are busy collecting brown envelopes from the ruling party. Some of us are admirers of Dr. Kabba, with all the harassment and intimidation perpetuated against him by the ruling party, they have still not succeeded in silencing him.

    Keep on keeping on Dr. Kabba. We are solidly with you and we pray every now and then for you to succeed in winning the flagbearer contest.

  9. It’s extremely sad that Constituency 001 is experiencing such thuggery and intimidation. May I appeal to all Heads of State of ECOWAS and The AFRICAN UNION to intervene now to save Sierra Leone from plunging into another bloody war.

  10. I want to unreservedly thank you very much Mr. Alie Kabbah for once again condemning political violence and vividly highlighting the consequences of such a crude manner of politicking perpetrated by the APC Thugs.

    I have no doubt you are a decent man and politician sharing the same mannerism and character with your brother and small boy of the Bo School Clan.

    Some of us have observed far too long to write a character descriptions of each and all of you vying for the position of a Flag bearer in the great SLPP.

    Hence therefore I personally have come to the conclusion that there is obvious reason and need for you to team up with Maada Bio whom we all believe is a decent gentleman, harmless, patriotic, mannered (Of course from the same Alma mater as you “MANNERS MAKETH MAN”) to fight the terrible evil of this nation – the APC.

    Please Mr. Kabba take this as my personal view and wishes for reasons i have given above.

    It is always wrong and unnecessary for that matter to fight or go into contest with a brother for one position if you and your brother shared the same aims and objectives.To me I sincerely believe you too share the same aim and objectives.

    In summary to what I meant by Aims and Objectives in this context, I believe: Both of you believed in the SLPP ideology. Both of you believed in decent politics. Both of you believed in giving death ears (for what is worth) to those ‘hungry for power’ politicians in our party that are constantly and idly engaged in character assassinations of your human persons.

    You both believed in the law and the constitution of this country and will always frown at its abuse by any one at any time. You also both believed in level playing ground in any contest and are prepared to accept the outcome of such contest subject to full compliance of the procedures laid down by the authorised authority (s).

    Above all you want the SLPP to take over governance of this country through the ballot box by 2018 with the most popular flag bearer aspirant elected at our next flag bearer convention. This flag bearer would be someone who is capable to bring back the lost glories that this country was once renowned for.

    This flag bearer must be someone who has this country at heart and had demonstrated this many, many times in the past. He must be one who understands the problems of the people of this country, the grass root, the young generation and and even the old generation alike.

    I therefore invite you Mr. Kabba to think over this message very, very carefully and seriously as you reach your irreversible decision. But remember, this is my own personal honest opinion and appeal. I thank you Sir.

    • This is very confusing Mohamed. Are you optimistic of a flagbearer, or do you want him to support Maada. First, all the qualities you stated are not what we have seen in Maada or his supporters.

      The war is over; Salone is no more a juggle to be governed by an uncouth person like Maada. Let him bring back our money he took to Ghana, before we start talking.

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