Sierra Leone Telegraph: 31 March 2021:
The United States Embassy in Freetown, yesterday issued a public notice informing that the United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken has ordered the reduction of visa sanctions on Sierra Leone, in recognition of the Government of Sierra Leone’s increased assistance in facilitating the timely return home of its nationals who are subject to final orders of removal from the United States.
“I am pleased to announce this reduction in sanctions,” stated newly arrived Ambassador David Reimer.
“The abiding friendship between our nations is built on ties of family, culture, and mutual respect, as well as political and economic exchange. We recognize and appreciate the Government of Sierra Leone’s improvements on removals issues and trust that the government will continue to work with us in establishing a mutually-agreeable process for accepting Sierra Leonean nationals subject to final orders of removal from the United States,” Ambassador Reimer said.
The statement go on to say that – “Effective March 31, the U.S. Embassy in Freetown will resume issuing all immigrant and most nonimmigrant visas to qualified Sierra Leoneans. Under Section 243(d) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) visa restrictions will continue to apply to B1, B2, and B1/B2 nonimmigrant visas for Sierra Leonean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MFAIC) officials and immigration officials until the Secretary of Homeland Security has determined that 243(d) visa restrictions are no longer merited and so informs the Secretary of State.”
In September last year, the United States of America stopped issuing visas to Sierra Leonean nationals, after the government of Sierra Leone reneged on an agreement to allow Sierra Leoneans deported by the USA to return to Sierra Leone.
In 2017, both the governments of the USA and Sierra Leone entered into a repatriation agreement, whereby the government of Sierra Leone will issue travel documents to Sierra Leonean nationals that have been declared ‘persona non grata’ by the US government to return to Sierra Leone.
A wise decision making Mr. President, I think nobody shows up to attack you, I do not know, maybe because of this is USA issues. May God continue to bless that great country; United States Of America. Some people were given an opportunity, to travel all the way to better themselves in the USA, if you don’t cause trouble nobody cares about you. Millions of people living in America without a valid documentation, but they still surviving with their families. For the President to take this wise decision to accept the return of the country’s Citizens for whatever reasons, I personally thank you Mr. President and I strongly promise to vote for you, insha Allah.
Bravo to the newly appointed ambassador Mr David, we the people of Sierra Leone love’s you so and God is with you
When we say one individual politician is capable of making a difference, look no further. This policy U-Turn by the Biden administration removing some of the visa restrictions the Trump administration placed upon our country, clearly shows when you have a bully in power that’s what you get. What a breath of fresh air. Trump was a nationalist and pursed an American first policy agenda Which was a clear departure of America role in leading the Free World since the end of the second world. His policies didn’t only undermine African countries aspiring for democracy, Free Press, and accountability from their governments but it embolden dictators around the world that they can commit what ever crimes against their own people, and no one will hold them to account.
One such dictator was the Uganda president Museveni, who when challenged by the US embassy on the controversial presidential election results held in January this year, was quick to point out America has no right to lecture other countries about their election process. Museveni was waving the Trump card about his unsubstantiated claims of stolen election. If we hack back to 2003, when former Liberian leader charles Taylor was indicted for war crimes in Sierra Leone, and we assumed instead of Bush, Trump was the then the President of the United States, there was no way we could have had Charles Taylor held to account for crimes committed in Sierra Leone. In his inaugurational address, president Biden promised the world American leadership in the world is back after four years of absence under the stwardship of the Trump administration.
Where there is the will ,determination and clear idea of where you want to take your country, with a common sense approach to all things about governing for the people and looking after their interest and welbeing, you are sure to succeed in your endeavours. Thanks to the fromer ambassador Maria Berewa, through her diplomatic way of doing things was able to navigate between two of the biggest egoes our country has ever confonted between Bio and Trump. That She was able to keep the relationship between the two countries on track will remain her enduring legacies. Some of the people that were deported to Sierra Leone, for which our government registered their objection to the Trump administration was from the Carribean Islands. Hence the break down of communication.