Sierra Leone’s ruling APC party will never confound its critics

Dr. Sama Banya

29 September 2012

 

When it comes to their insatiable quench for power the APC will never confound their critics; on the contrary they will always do exactly as predicted.

The former opposition Member of Parliament for constituency seven, which comprises Njaluahun chiefdom in the Kailahun district – the honourable Robin Falley, cross carpeted to the ruling APC party at the end of the life of the last Parliament last Tuesday.

I wrote then that the only people to whom his behaviour came as a surprise was the ruling APC. I also predicted a number of things that the party would do next and they are almost exactly as I had predicted.

Some big Whigs of the party were in Segbwema town last Friday, when Robin Falley formally parted company with the SLPP.

There is an interesting characteristic behaviour of the quislings who join the APC from any other political party, and that is that they immediately inculcate all the bad traits of their new association – the foremost of which is that they become inveterate liars.

Falley has been no exception. He told his audience that he was joining the APC because the SLPP had refused him the party symbol, giving as their reason his association with the ruling party.

The truth is that the symbol for the Parliamentary seat in his constituency was only given the day following Robin Falley’s defection, and it was done by a free vote of the constituency executive members.

Next he lied that the SLPP never went to his aid when the APC government instituted a criminal charge against him, for alleged violation of an electoral law involving the recruiting of underage children to register to vote at the forthcoming elections.

He concealed the fact that it was Martin Banya who granted him bail on two occasions, until the attorney general himself turned up in Kenema and the magistrate imposed new bail conditions, which no one in that city could meet and so the APC government detained him on remand.

When bail was granted, yet again it was Martin Banya who stood as surety. So why was Robin lying?

In any case, Martin Banya will now appear before the Kenema magistrate’s court to withdraw his bail, in the very unlikely event that the case would come up or even continue.

In the meantime, the APC party symbol for the constituency has been awarded to the former SLPP MP – Robin Falley.

But like I have also predicted, the criminal case against him will end up being declared nolle prosequi ‘BUFF CASE’ by the government. The party is very notorious for NOT PLAYING according to the rules.

It is commonly acknowledged that although chiefs are expected to support the government of the day, they must on no account get involved in party politics. With the APC, such policy only applies when they are in opposition and is thrown overboard once they are in power.

In constituency five in the Kailahun district, the party has nominated a section chief as its Parliamentary candidate. This is the party which boasts of respect for the country’s constitution.

Three Newspapers have been suspended by the Independent Media Commission for unruly behaviour.

What a pity that despite its belligerence and open defiance of the Independent Media Commission’s recent ban, the Awareness newspaper, which “is the most widely read and has the largest circulation, and on which everyone has come to rely for its research and facts” has been suspended for one month.

I had intended to call the publisher’s attention to a categorical statement that she published a year ago, when Retired Brigadier Julius Maada Bio was elected as the flag bearer of the opposition Sierra Leone Peoples party (SLPP).

She said that as soon as Parliament was dissolved, there would be a tsunami type of defection by former Members of the Party to the ruling All Peoples Congress party.

She even boasted of having the names of such would be cross carpeting honourable ladies and gentlemen.

While she may still be in possession of her phantom list, it has emerged that apart from the discredited Robin Falley, all forty five former SLPP MPs applied for the party’s symbol at the primaries.

My very great regret is that such renowned and eloquent debaters like Dr. B. M. Kamanda, Elizabeth Lavalie, Eric Jumu, and Mathew Nyuma were not able to make it through the primaries.

It is true that one or two had been in Parliament since 1996, but all the same, how I wish there was some way of constituencies being made aware of how very effective their representatives were at Tower Hill.

It was through the astute ingenuity of Dr. Kamanda that the vital ECOWAS document, which was the undoing of Christiana Thorpe and President Ernest Bai Koroma in the now infamous staggering nomination fees saga, was brought to light.

But there will always be a place for the likes of Kamanda in the civic life of the party and of the country, particularly under an SLPP government.

I would like to assure them that like their more fortunate colleagues, such as Bernadette Lahai, Tamba Musa-Sam and some others, their immense contribution would always be remembered.

While his Excellency Ernest Bai Koroma is still the de facto and de jure President of Sierra Leone, his ministers are only holding the fort.

But is there any reason why the Anti-Corruption Commission’s  Commissioner should not ask them to begin to prepare a list of their current assets, so as to compare them with what was reluctantly in some cases submitted to the ACC?

I can identify two massive buildings within forty yards of each other, around the junction of Berwick Street and Savage Street; one has been completed while the other is still under construction and both belong to two of the pa’s trusted lieutenants respectively.

But trust the watchful people of Sierra Leone; once the call is put out, Lawyer Joseph Kamara would need extra hands to deal with the avalanche of information that would be made available to him.

And that is only in five years; will the people of this country allow these same characters with their quick-rich mentality to be there for a second term?

The past week was full of rumours about who is going to be President Koroma’s prospective running mate. Joe Amara-Bangali junior’s name had dropped. And the hot one was Justice John Kamanda of the Special Court.

Practically all the reliable media outlets had as much as confirmed the rumour, until a very reliable friend informed Puawui late Saturday night that it was not John Kamanda, at least not yet.

Be that as it may, it is certain that the unfortunate person would be named before the draft of this column gets to my editors’ desks.

Wishing my readers a pleasant and restful weekend.

   

 

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