Sierra Leone’s inexperienced ministers are a disaster for the country’s governance

Alpha Amadu Jalloh: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 19 May 2024:

In the complicated landscape of Sierra Leonean politics, the controversial second term of President Julius Maada Bio has been marked by a significant shift in the composition of his cabinet.

In a bid to court the youth demographic, President Bio opted to sideline seasoned figures in his administration, replacing them with a cadre of young, inexperienced individuals. This move, however, has had dire consequences for governance, as the administration has been plagued by immaturity, incompetence, and a lack of accountability.

Gone are the days of Jacob Jusu Saffa and David Francis, figures known for their maturity and experience in governance. President Bio’s decision to remove such stalwarts, along with elder statesmen like John Benjamin and other Presidential advisers has left a void in his administration. These elders, often unafraid to offer dissenting opinions, served as a check on President Bio’s power, providing valuable guidance and wisdom.

In their place, President Bio has appointed a cadre of young ministers, many of whom lack the experience and maturity required for effective governance. Figures like David Sengeh, Orman Bangura and Timothy Kabba, now occupy key positions in the government, yet their tenure has been marred by displays of immaturity and ineptitude.

The Ministry of Information and Civic Education, led by an individual like Chernor Bah, has become a battleground of misinformation and deflection. Instead of addressing pressing issues facing the nation, ministers are preoccupied with concocting stories to defend their colleagues’ missteps.

This culture of defensiveness has led to absurd accusations, such as insulting religious figures and institutions, further eroding public trust in the government.

Moreover, President Bio’s penchant for control has created a cabinet of yes-men and yes-women, individuals who lack the courage to challenge his authority. Dissent is stifled, and critical voices are silenced, leaving President Bio unchecked in his decision-making.

President Bio’s strategy of youth inclusion has backfired spectacularly. Instead of attracting the attention of young voters, his administration has become synonymous with incompetence and mismanagement. While President Bio gallivants across the globe, the nation grapples with poverty, disease, and hunger.

The youth, once seen as the future of Sierra Leone, are now being used as pawns in President Bio’s political games. Their potential is being squandered, as they are thrust into positions for which they are ill-equipped. As President Bio continues to prioritize his own interests over those of the nation, Sierra Leone descends further into chaos.

Finally, the youth-infested cabinet of President Julius Maada Bio has been a disaster for governance in Sierra Leone. By prioritizing loyalty over competence, President Bio has created a government riddled with ineptitude and immaturity.

As the nation suffers, President Bio’s legacy is tarnished, and the hopes of a better future for Sierra Leoneans fade away.

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