Another attempted coup in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone Telegraph: 26 November 2023:

Attempts at unseating Sierra Leone’s President Julius Maada Bio continue in the early hours of this Sunday morning, when a group of unknown soldiers and police officers broke into the capital’s main ammunition stores at the Wilberforce Barracks, taking away heavy weapons.

Gunshots were fired at and near the Presidential Lodge where President Bio is believed to be heavily guarded by presidential guards.

The armed group then made their way to the Pademba Road Prisons were they then freed the prisoners, many of whom have been locked up for several years without trial, including political prisoners.

The Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation is believed to be under siege and has stopped broadcasting.
Heavily armed soldiers have been deployed in the capital and could be seen patrolling the street.

A statement issued by the government says that the military have brought the situation under control but Freetown remains tense.



  1. God bless you, Bob Massalley. The need for citizens like you will ever be extravagant; citizens who are not gullible and small-minded and who look at things squarely from every angle.

    The three leading newspapers online that are still standing–THE SIERRA LEONE TELEGRAPH, THE ORGANIZER and COCORIOKO– have asked critical questions about Sunday’s events in Sierra Leone. We hope citizens will leave their blind tribal, hegemonic and regionally-driven support for this Bio dictatorship and face the facts squarely about the charade going on in our country. We are not children or robots to be pushed around by every wind of subterfuge.

    We need the SLPP Government to come clean about what happened on Sunday because many facts do not add up.

  2. ART, the Leone has depreciated more than 300% since Bio entered State House. I checked my remittance slips and did the Maths. $1 was less than Le7000 in 2018 but is now Le24000. I am a stickler for the facts with a strong belief that a sharp intellect and honesty should always move in lockstep. Where did you get that 70% jobless rate from? Neither the Bretton Wood institutions nor the Sierra Leone Government measure the jobless rate for obvious reasons.

    Back to the breaking story, I would just say welcome to a complex game of whack-a- mole. Only heaven knows what next will pop up. Is it the 90s Sierra Leone all over again without the guerilla warfare yet? Your reported coup attempt is either real or feigned. It could very well be a Siaka Stevens-like simulation to eliminate potential or perceived security threats to a man who stole elections under the noses and laser-glare of the International community’s election observers or just a ruse to solicit international support or sympathy.

    Or could it be it is an attempt to scupper the ongoing mediation efforts to ease post-election elections as they are not following Bio’s script or stage-management? How could the International community all of a sudden empathise with Bio whether the reported coup is real or simulated when they are the very same people accusing him even more vociferously than the apparently losing APC Presidential candidate of staging a constitutional coup against the docile, pacifist and peace-loving people of Sierra Leone.

    The former ECOMOG soldier now has the temerity to say he is sitting tight and warming the bench illegally in the Presidential Lodge to protect democracy. It is the Sierra Leone People whose mandate, voting franchise and agency Bio has usurped who should strain every sinew of their beings, flipping backwards and dodging flying bullets to remedy their dire circumstances and situation, retrieve their stolen votes and protect their nascent democracy from the usurper. A paragon of chaos, discord and disorder he is. He was once part of the NPRC military Government who made a coup to bring peace to a war-torn nation in the 90s and made the situation 10 times worse.

    So Bio is cloaked in ironies and is used to living a charmed life.The international community are idly watching by, winking or nodding as a country with a chequered history littered with one of the highest military and constitutional coup attempts in Africa and capping that with a rebel war teeters to the brink and approaches yet another cliff-edge or precipice.

    I was testing over the weekend an hypothesis that the former soldier-cum-President Joseph Saidu “Big Wais” Momoh was not the worst leader Sierra Leone has ever had as postulated by many. I have been  trawling archives of economic datasets over the weekend when I was interrupted by this breaking news in Freetown.  Certainly Sierra Leone’s income/GDP per capita was better off in one or two years of Momoh’s rule than Bio’s. I am looking at the debt per GDP ratio, inflation, growth rate, currency value and FDI.

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