Sierra Leone Telegraph: 29 March 2017
President Koroma’s coronation by the members of the ruling APC Youth League as lifelong chairman of the party at their convention in Port Loko last weekend, is now proving to have far reaching consequences beyond the corridors of the APC party offices.
Tonight, there are unconfirmed reports reaching the Sierra Leone Telegraph, of a palace coup by the president, who has summarily decided to sack his ruling party’s majority leader in parliament – Ibrahim Bundu. There are speculations as to why Bundu may have been deposed.
But the most likely reason is that Ibrahim Bundu is refusing to back down from his ambition to contest the ruling APC party’s presidential candidacy election, in favour of the president’s cousin and preferred candidate – John Sisay.
John Sisay is the former chief executive officer of the country’s rutile mining company – Sierra Rutile Ltd., where he is alleged to have made hundreds of millions of dollars fortune. Sisay is the ruling party’s major financial contributor.
Several other ruling party candidates that have been nursing their presidential ambitions have long given up, after strong warning from the president that he will not tolerate dissent and the risk of open competition for the party’s flagbearership turning ugly at the forthcoming national convention.
It is understood that Ibrahim Bundu – a parliamentarian himself, now risks losing the APC party symbol at next year’s general election, in addition to losing his job as the ruling party’s majority leader in parliament.
It is believed that Ibrahim Bundu has been replaced by Leonard Fofanah as the party’s majority leader and leader of government business in parliament.
Ibrahim Bundu is the younger brother of the opposition SLPP veteran politician – Dr. Abbas Bundu. President Koroma is said to have lost confidence in Ibrahim Bundu, who is refusing to step down from his presidential ambition in favour of John Sisay – the president’s cousin and financial bankroller of the ruling APC.
President Koroma plans to abort the electoral process
There are unconfirmed reports also that the removal of Ibrahim Bundu as APC Majority Leader is part of a grand plan by President Koroma to table a motion in Parliament so as to amend the timetable set out by the country’s National Electoral Commission (NEC) for the electoral processes and elections.
Ibrahim Bundu, who is said to be strongly against the move by the President to interfere in the electoral process set by the NEC, has now paid the ultimate price for dissension. Tonight he is understood to have been sacked by the president.
There are fears that the motion expected to be tabled by APC in Parliament, will amend the voter registration period, as well as the referendum and the date for the Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Council Elections scheduled for the March 7, 2018.
Members of Parliament are being warned by the general public that any attempt to disrupt the voter registration, election date and the entire electoral process will meet the stiffest resistance.
Critics are tonight quoting Professor Patrice L. Lumumba, who said this: “we hire hyenas to take care of our goats; and when the goats start to disappear, we wonder what happened. You deserve the government you elect; so until we choose our leaders based on their track records – leaving tribal and other irrelevant extraneous issues aside, Africa will continue to wallow in poverty.”
The APC can go ahead and select President Koroma to be its Chairman for life, but any attempt to politically disrupt or interfere with the electoral process will be a recipe for chaos in Sierra Leone. I hope well meaning members of the Party will strongly advice against this.
Lessons should be learnt from Burkina Faso, where the country became ungovernable due to political machinations by Parliament to extend the term of the President. The rest is now history.
We are enjoying peace today after this reckless APC created conditions that led to a civil war. We do not want to return to the dark days we have left behind.