Sierra Leone Tourist Board accused of discrimination in demolishing properties at Lumley Beach 

Abdul Bero Kamara: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 25 March 2024:

The demolition of beach bars at Lumley-Aberdeen Beach has been a topic of controversy over the past week. The majority of structures have been demolished, except for a select few that according to the SLTB have met the required building standards.

However, one particular white and blue building on the Lumely side of the beach opposite the Chinese Golden Hotel has raised concerns as it appears to violate the tourist board standards by obstructing the view of the beach.

Despite not meeting the required standards, this specific building has remained untouched during the demolition process.

Investigations have revealed that the owner of this building is one Mr Batilo Songa, a prominent member and financier of the SLPP  and former Organizing Secretary, who is also a 2023 contestant for the SLPP chairmanship.

Mr Songa’s close association with President Bio has led to accusations that the building is being protected from demolition due to political connections.

The perceived favouritism towards this building has sparked outrage among the public, with many calling for fair and equal application of the law.

In applying the principle of equity once other structures have been demolished, the blue and white buildings owned by Mr Songa should not be exempt from the same fate.

The principle of justice demands that all buildings, regardless of ownership or political affiliations, should be subject to the same rules and regulations. As the debate continues to unfold, the issue of transparency and accountability in the demolition process has come into question.

The public outcry against the perceived special treatment of certain structures highlights the need for a fair and impartial approach to enforcing the law; therefore only through consistent and unbiased application of the law can communities ensure that all individuals and properties are treated equally under the law.


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