Prof. Samuel Edmond Nonie: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 10 February 2021:
I write to make a public statement on the unfortunate misunderstanding caused by the actions of a group of colleagues and myself, through our organizing under the name of “the SLPP Union of Lecturers”.
A meeting was held on the week of the 1st of February 2021, under the auspices of sharing views between Sierra Leone People’s Party members who are university lecturers.
The intention of the discussions was to identify how this group could act as a think tank within the party, for the development of better policy on education.
This body would function in support of the political leadership by developing insights and positive policy initiatives from the ground-up for their consideration.
Across the globe, the formulation of such bodies for positive impact on policy is commonplace and it was our intention to offer the same.
To be clear, the organization would have not operated outside of the structures of the Sierra Leone People’s Party, and membership or lack thereof of the union would not be used to influence the careers of academic staff within the Universities in any way.
However, on careful reconsideration, we recognize the negative message that the formulation of the union caused especially considering the nomenclature used.
We also recognize that such a union may result in the creation of discord and distrust between colleagues within academia.
In this vein, we have made the decision to dissolve “the SLPP Union of Lecturers” effective immediately.
However, when and if the leadership may call upon our input on issues pertaining to academia, individuals may personally make themselves available for any advice needed.
We wish to apologize to all members of the public for the alarm caused by the formation of this group and assure all Sierra Leoneans that the intention was to provide input in the interests of the greater good of the country.
Prof. Samuel Edmond Nonie
Under the current PAOPA leadership, a few of whom are purported to have earned peace and conflict resolution degrees, including the chief minster along with the president, the seeds of disunity, divisions, discrimination, tribalism, and a host of other conflicts contributing factors, continue to flourish in our nation like never before. Just when you think we have hit rock bottom in terms of destructive action, a new lower level suddenly emerges. The thought of civil servants, in this case highly educated lecturers, charged with the civic responsibility to impact knowledge to the next generation of leaders, openly coming out to sow the seeds of division in our already abysmal educational institutions, should make any patriotic citizen scream in dismay.
With everything being equal, these lecturers should have no place in lecture halls. Whether the group is disbanded or not, they have already proven to be unworthy to impact knowledge to our young citizens devoid of political inclinations. Instead of them being referred to as lecturers, they should instead be called political activists, leaning towards a certain party in our politics.
Absolutely well said – Special Agent Young 4na – your insights are always impeccable my brother from another mother.These people should all resign or be relieved of their positions of authority; they have foolishly squandered the trust bestowed upon them by the generous people of our beloved Sierra Leone. Its time for us to say goodbye to them all.(lol)
Yes this is the rigt thing to do. It doesn’t take a genius to work out your pet project will meet such large scale condemnation from all right thinking Sierra Leoneans. There is enough secret societies in Sierra Leone, we don’t need to add one in guise of a think tank. Creating an SLPP think tank, which you alluded to, is not only wrong in the context of calling it brazenly SLPP think tank. You could have given it all sorts of names, and say it is open to all Sierra Leoneans that believe in TEAM SIERRA LEONE UNITED. Chapter III of the 1991 constitution subsection 27 protection from discrimination. If this so called SLPP had taken off, it would have been a direct violation of this act.
Because some lecturer who happens to be a Sierra Leonean, and wanting to join this SLPP think tank, might have been discriminated or denied membership because he is not a member of the SLPP party. What if the said individual claims he is not a member of any political party, but still thinks he qualified to be a member of the think tank will he be admitted, to this group? How does your organisation, or your think tank, argue in a court of law that you are not discriminating against the said individual. You will argue membership is only open to SLPP members. That argument itself is self defeating in the context of laws against any form of discrimination as proscribed and enacted by Parliament. Yes there are party political Think Tanks around the world. But come on we are talking about Sierra Leone. The difference is those think tanks, are open to all races and tribes and most importantly share the same views.
Conservative or otherwise. Not just people from the South of our country.It is good you disbanded and realised the pain and anger you caused in our Country. Our country is too small. We don’t need intellectuals to create division in our country. It will be best served if we fight corruption and put to good use our God given natural resources and help heal our country. Maybe if you have formed a think that say: “SIERRA LEONE LECTURERS THINK TANK AGAINST CORRUPTION AND TRIBALISM LETS COME TOGETHER” You will certainly get a broad support from every corner of Sierra Leone.
You are missing the point Mr Jalloh. They have a right to form a think tank of SLPP members just like APC, NGC or otherwise. What is not right here is using a public sector, like Lecturers, teachers, police, bus drivers, traffic wardens or any other public sector and align it to a particular political party. Let’s be clear about the difference here. You are free to form Ekutay or any other political group. Using a public sector that is supposed to serve the national interest for a particular political party is what is wrong. Let’s put things in perspective.
Gentlemen – they have dissolved the group huh? Well,tell that to those itsy-bitsy children who are still wet behind their ears – not buying any of it at all.An annoying rooster doesn’t crow at dawn just for fun,or to tell the world that it proudly wears a crown on its head but to warn all those still fast asleep that daylight is fast approaching.Now the whole world knows what exactly the SLPP have been conniving,scheming,plotting and wickedly planning to do behind the scenes.Goodness gracious what a serious lapse in judgement! What were these so called learned people thinking? (lol)
A fragile nation that resembles a flimsy,faulty,rickety pendulum totally displaced sideways from its original resting equilibrium position,that is still dangling and swinging erratically back and forth between the most extreme points of mistrust,suspicions and anger is no longer suspended on the solid,reliable pivots of Freedom and Democracy it seems,but is being completely weighed down by self-seeking attitudes promoting tribalism and ominous totalitarian rule.Hey you can dissolve the group if you want to but who has ever seen an anarchist capable of washing away the devious,wicked intentions of his dark,clouded,miserable heart overnight?
Gentlemen – count me out,not buying any of it at all;the deal to wreck havoc and destroy our beloved nation has already been finalized,the cow slaughtered and butchered,stakeholders of mischief have all taken their desired share, and absconded, now all that they are quietly waiting for is the appointed time to serve the scorching tasteless broth they have long been preparing secretly in the dark for many years now.As long as the SLPP continues to be a political party in Sierra Leone our nation will never move forward – the word “Disagreeable” doesn’t quite adequately begin to describe what these criminals now in power truly represent;But Stargazer there must be a words that fits them perfectly;How about ‘Objectionable,”hateful’ or ‘bad-tempered.’Nope we need a much stronger word to describe their obnoxious behaviors,none of those will aptly suffice.We really need something that will fit them perfectly like a key inside its rightful padlock (lol)
Mr Mansaray with all due respect I don’t think you got the zeist of my argument. In one part Of my contribution, I did say political parties can form a think tank. But it should be open to all. These lecturers would have discriminated against the mass membership of the SLPP party. Never mind being a member of different party. Yes political parties can have think tanks. But its open to all. The Labour party in the UK had a ultra left wing movement call MOMENTUM that was solely wedded in liberal causes, like limiting the activities of the private sector in the public sector, and supporting Jeremy Corby to become UK prime minister. Then on the Conservative party, you got a think tank they call Conservative home.
In the United States its similar. You got APAC, NRA, supporting GOP causes, and many others like that. The Democratic party have silicone Valley. High tech business and the rest. There is a reason why members of the army and the police are not political activists. These lecturers happen to occupy such high positions in our society that decide the fate of millions of students. So we don’t want to give them ammunition against students that don’t believe in their political beliefs. Or worst come from the wrong tribe.
We have to stop pretending tribalism doesn’t exist in our country. Like corruption, it is a cancer we need to root out from our country. These are the two factors that have held us back since independence. You are only known for your tribe in Sierra leone. Outside Sierra Leone, you are just an ordinary black man or African American. In the UK, an ethnic minority. In some South American countries, with huge black population they still use the N-WORD to address any black person. So the solution is to think as Sierra Leoneans first. Not your tribe first then nationality.
Yeah. We will continue to push hard and dial up the rhetoric, not only on idle and reckless ideologies to plunge our country into chaos and anarchy, but also on the Bio SLPP kakistocracy’s fraudulently bleeding of our country’s financial resources to the benefit of the First family and their cohorts. We will remain vigilant till Sierra Leone is freed from all forms of fraud, reckless and dangerous ideologies and social injustices. That’s going to happen in the not too distant future folks! God bless the Republic of Sierra Leone. “We day na road”.
Dear Prof. Samuel Edmond Nonie,
I was just in the process of writing a formal letter to you to ask for the immediate dissolution of the group. It was ill-advised, unwise, and a major error of judgement on the part of all those who thought it necessary to form such a group in a public space in Sierra Leone.
As I mentioned in my previous comment, this is how genocidal processes start. They start with grossly irrational social and political exclusion actions. This formation of the group was very unhelpful to the SLPP party in general, and to the President in particular.
If you want to form a Think Tank, set up an independent NGO with the sole aim of policy review, allowing you to participate legitimately in the policy-making process outside of your work setting.
But I must thank you so much for taking the right step in dissolving the group immediately after the comments. We were just in the process of setting up a team to write to the US and UK governments on the matter. Let us do all we can to combat divisions in Sierra Leone.
Great letter, Mr James Fallah-Williams. I share your views and sentiments wholeheartedly. Professor Nonie and his group have had the decency to acknowledge the error of their ways and to dissolve their unholy association forthwith. God bless and protect our homeland.