Sierra Leone’s democratic challenges – a closer look at Ambassador David Reimer’s statements – Op ed

Dr Doma: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 21 August 2023:

In a recent appearance on the Good Morning Salone Show on 98.1 FM, US Ambassador David Reimer made waves with his candid remarks concerning Sierra Leone’s June 24th Elections.

With a clear stance on reflecting the views of the US Government, Ambassador David Reimer voiced his concerns about the credibility of the elections, pointing to irregularities that have sparked significant debate.

What stands out is his call for collaboration between external bodies and local institutions to comprehensively investigate the matter, these comments I think is particularly in relation to the committee headed by Vice President Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh to investigate the June 24th elections.

Many critics argue against a former vice presidential candidate heading a committee that is charged to  scrutinize an elections that are contested to be an electioneering coup d’etat.

Yet, Ambassador David Reimer’s statements seem to echo a broader plea for transparency, fairness, and stability in Sierra Leone’s democratic processes. Viewing his statements through a diplomatic lens, the Ambassador’s intent becomes evident: to encourage peaceful resolutions and uphold the integrity of Sierra Leone’s democratic institutions.

Beyond the elections, Ambassador David Reimer’s actions reverberate further.

His swift response on social media tweets regarding the abstention of APC members from governance, along with his call for APC MPs to take their parliamentary seats, underscores his commitment to engagement and fostering unity.

Amid the clamour of criticism, it is imperative to recognize the importance of impartiality and the need for constructive discourse.

If the committee’s authenticity is to be upheld, its composition must reflect an unflinching commitment to fairness, regardless of government affiliation.

In this complex arena of political dynamics, the statements by Ambassador David Reimer serve as a reminder of the delicate balance between diplomacy and democratic values.

By advocating for an impartial investigation and urging unity, Ambassador David Reimer demonstrates a commitment to preserving peace and stability in Sierra Leone. As the nation navigates these challenging times, it is crucial for all stakeholders to come together in pursuit of a brighter democratic future, where fairness, accountability, and transparency reign supreme.



  1. Med Sillah, I believe you are being too kind when you say of Bio, for him “To even consider the Vice President to lead an investigation clearly shows his poor judgement.” No. It shows he really believes he can continue to take people for fools. Right as the election was unfolding, it was already clear he wasn’t going to get the 55% necessary to avoid a run-off and that is exactly what happened, but they continued with their plan to steal the election anyway, taking us for fools. Then now he wants to find some way to appease mostly the EU and the US because they are donors (I am sure he does not care what Sierra Leoneans think) and he comes up with this nonsense.

    The fox has suggested to the hen that it gets hired to assess security for the hen house after being the one coming in at night and eating chickens. He knows what he is doing. Other than looking at polling station results, much is not required to see that the election was stolen and he knows this, so he has no interest in appointing an independent body. So no, it’s not his judgement that is in question here. If anything, it shows he is not very bright, because surely, if he was, he would not believe that anyone would take seriously any Committee headed by the VP. He might as well have announced that he and Konneh are chairing the Committee set up to see if there were any wrongdoing and to determine what should be done in the future.

    You also said “The Bio administration is in for a very turbulent second term…” We definitely need to make sure of this. He has even more devious plans in store and will not stop here if this election theft is a walk in the park for him. Either he starts looking to change the constitution so he can run and of course win again or they will be engineering another win for the SLPP candidate who ever that is, which (1) seeing how Bio did not get 55% this time and (2) now the people are really upset at him, and that is before we begin to factor in the economic decline that is happening now and going to keep happening, I don’t see how the SLPP candidate wins in 2028, if Bio holds on that long.

    Either way, we need to make sure that democracy prevails. One problem in Africa is that the people generally do not believe they have the power to bring about change because they can’t overcome the brutality of our authoritarian regimes. Making Bio leave office with his tail between his legs because of this will go a long way towards empowering our people.

    Lastly, I keep reading articles that sort of lay all the blame on the ECSL as if Bio is an innocent bystander who happened to profit from the ECSL’s theft. That is not what happened. Bio directed Konneh as to how the results would go. In parliament, the election was stolen for the SLPP and the high 60% SLLP got was I am, sure not a random number. Konneh was informed what the tally will be.

  2. I don’t see why all the fuss around a statement by the US ambassador which was a stated fact about the US position. ECSL regardless of what the law prescribes, in the interest of transparency should have no problem in releasing these disputed polling station results for the entire country. Failing to do so has further raised suspicion and rightly so that the election results are not credible.
    The problem we have in Sierra Leone is integrity deficit emanating from sheer dishonesty, we prefer to defend the indefensible rather that speak up the truth because of our political and social leaning.
    The Bio administration is in for a very turbulent second term if it continues with its current stance in the midst of a cost of living crisis. President Bio is claimed to be the father of democracy and has the best opportunity to prove this by adding his voice to urge ECSL to do the decent thing.
    To even consider the Vice President to lead an investigation clearly shows his poor judgement.

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