What next Sam Sumana?

Puawui – Dr. Sama Banya: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 22 June 2019:

I first met the then quiet looking young man – Sam Sumana at an American Embassy reception. My “nephew” the APC Presidential candidate Ernest Bai Koroma, introduced Sam Sumana to me as his running mate in the 2007 Presidential election.

Our next encounter was at State House, when we were invited to present our complaint to him – by now the Vice President, about the attack by APC hooligans on our SLPP party headquarters and especially on our Unity radio station. I thought his handling of the proceedings was clumsy.

I however gave him the benefit of the doubt because I thought he was suffering from the effect of being catapulted into the high position by crooked means (thanks to Christiana Thorpe).

The other occasion was when he addressed members of the APC and other people in the famous Kailahun Court Barry, after the 2008 local government elections in which the SLPP candidates won all the seats.

Sam Sumana the Vice President, unwittingly declared that the APC government would deal with any opponents with fire.

Poor fellow, he must have been unaware that even in their hey days, the APC thugs never crossed the Moa ferry at Manowa during the 1968 bye election campaign.

The invading group withdrew ignominiously and the leadership was finally forced to declare the country’s first state of Public Emergency.

In any case, two weeks after Sam Sumana’s declaration of war, the Kailahun district SLPP leadership under John Benjamin, met in Kailahun (in the presence of today’s APC Sylvia Blyden), and declared publicly that we would return fire for fire, if ever the APC attacked our district.

Like many others, I sympathised with Sam Sumana for APC’s uncouth method of getting rid of its membership, by publicly humiliating and disgracing them as happened to him – their former deputy leader and Vice President.

This was the same man who allegedly ran to the American Embassy for protection (the APC alleged that he had abandoned his position and sought asylum in a Foreign Embassy), after his official security was abruptly withdrawn and he genuinely feared for his life.

Readers must be familiar with other humiliations meted out to Sam Sumana by the APC leadership, after his disgraceful removal from office, such as seizing his diplomatic passport at the Lungi International Airport.

Because of all the cruelty and humiliation he suffered, his Kono people out of sympathy, rallied around him and with their C4C party, physically demolished APC’s presence and influence in the Kono district.

His popularity was on the ascendancy, but then like most such politicians, he betrayed his people and humiliated himself by sneaking quietly into Makeni early this year to do a deal with Ernest Bai Koroma and the APC leadership.

With all of the above and more, one would have thought that he would be living a quiet life or be active among his C4C supporters, that is, if he still enjoys their total support.

On the contrary, he is in the news for having public confrontation with the police, and later putting out a story about his having been invited to take the kick-off at a football match in Port Loko. The statement was immediately refuted by the spokesperson of the football club concerned.

The question now is what next Sam Sumana?

With no intention to bore my readers with repetition, I would like to remind our various do-gooders and their like-minded political commentators on the current Sierra Leone scene, that 70% of our population is illiterate.

It is this group that is often influenced by the recalcitrance of the APC leadership as well as the likes of Sam Sumana. The APC doggedly refuses to accept that they have lost political power for the next 10 years, and that it is in their best interest to reconcile with themselves to the reality of the situation.

But because they believed that they were entrenched in power like the Rock of Gibraltar, they ignored every warning and every advice, and even forget what they and the security forces did to the unarmed victims of the SLPP in opposition, who were often marginalised and brutalised merely for being SLPP.

Now, when the shoes are on the other foot, APC expect us to play God, even in the presence of their persistent non-cooperation with the SLPP government.

Do they really believe that after all this, our illiterate people will understand if we tell them to sit by and turn the other cheek?
I am not by nature a hardliner; but on the other hand I believe in facing reality. I believe firmly that if we just sit by and accept hook, line and sinker – APC’s intransigence, we would not have any support from our people by 2023.

They will see us as weaklings who have succumbed to the threat of the APC. We would never commit that suicide. No.

What they have meted out to us in the past will be meted out to them in full force. It is the only language that our friends in the APC understands.

6 Comments

  1. “What they have meted out to us in the past will be meted out to them in full force. It is the only language that our friends in the APC understands.“

    This statement could also have come from the APC hardcore, but do we as a nation need it??? The answer is of course is NO, NO, NO!

    What do we need is as follows – a progressive party leadership like in the NGC party, good governance, build up our institutions and if you are in power, work in the interest of the country.

    My advice to SLPP – refrain from Tit for Tat and concentrate on nation building based on economical and social development
    as your Performance since coming to power is encouraging.

    My advice to APC – let the progressives sum up courage to replace their current party leaders. EBK cannot and should not continue to hold this party to ransom.

    My advice to C4C – C4C should not and must not be seen as a Kono party only; bring clarity into your leadership structures and also Sam Sumana should step down and stop dividing the party.

    My advice to NGC – continue your struggle for nation building and be the guidance of good governance; engage and invest more in the diaspora votes and consolidate the hold in the Kambia District and invest in Freetown’s urban and rural areas.

    Finally let us put country FOS because our poor Nation badly deserves it!!!

  2. CAMPAIGNING for the next elections has already started. Dr Sama Banya knows the odds are heavily stacked against ‘his party’, the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) on winning the the 2023 parliamentary and presidential elections. From his iputs to this forum, with the usual unpredictable wind-ups, many will perceive Dr Banya as a vicious but cunning man who had made good for himself from Sierra Leone’s dirty politics, and doesn’t give a toss about the prospects of present and future generations.

    Now, he is busy playing psychology on Chief Alhaji Sam Sumana, hoping that he would jump into the roguish SLPP bandwagon. However, Chief Sam Sumana and the Kono people don’t have the SLPP DNA, and are smart enough to detect this old man’s tricks.

    “Like many others, I sympathise with Sam Sumana for APC’s uncouth method of getting rid of its membership, by publicly humiliating and disgracing them as happened to him – their former deputy leader an Vice President.” That’s Dr Banya (aka Puawui) throwing the “hook, line and sinker”, fully baited with worms, onto Chief Alhaji Sam Sumana.

    The SLPP is predominantly a South-East church and have not got the constituent base (less than 40%) wide enough to win national elections. In fact, they never have won a fair and transparent election – they always depend on cheating to achieve their means.

    The danger with the SLPP is that they are so power hungry in such a way that they are prepared to mortgage the country to any bidder to enable them to be at the helm of power. Yet they pretend that they love the country – they don’t, they only love themselves.

    Can you imagine spending more than half of your Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on a bridge? Is the level of risk not equivalent to virtually selling your country – especially when coming from a ‘near bankrupt economy’?

    The people of Koinadugu or Karene districts, among other districts, are struggling to make ends meet; not to mention the multitude of gold diggers (service men) ploughing the streets of the capital, Freetown, hoping for a good belly full, and a decent shack to charge up. All one can perceive is the glorification of an individual who is yet to prove his worth to the nation.

    Chief Sam Sumana’s main goal is to occupy the highest seat of power in the country – the Presidency. He had come so close to this position and believes he could accomplish the finishing line. Although, he also realizes that his team, the Coalition for Change (C4C) party, may not be strong and diverse enough for him to achieve this goal. So now, Chief Sam Sumana is in the middle of a dilemma: of going back to his old doctrine – the All Peoples Congress (APC) party and be prepared to lose some influence from his regional base – Kono district; or stay with his C4C party and hope for a miracle to take place.

    In his recent fracas with the ‘new’ Sierra Leone Police (SLP), Chief Sam Sumana looked strong, healthy and confident; coupled with a charismatic feature that portrays presidential material. The APC would have to accept their ‘prodigal son’ to champion the crusade of winning the 2023 elections.

    A ticket with Dr Samura Kamara or Cherinor Marju Bah (the APC’s previous flag bearers for President and Vice President) as running mate to Chief Sam Samuna, would undoubtedly guarantee victory for the APC! This will strengthen their philosophy in the accension of power within the party, and also increase their popularity (or diversity) within the country – with the minority ethnic groups such as the Lokos, Fullahs, Susus or Creoles having the faith that, their ‘own’ could also get to the ultimate position of power, irrespective of their ethnic origin.

    Charles Francis Margai should not be despondent with his desire for recognition as a direct descendant of the family that inherited the present political system from the colonial masters. Charles Margai, as in the case of Sam Samuna, can generate influence in his base – Moyamba district and surrounding areas – and rejuvenate his People’s Movement for Democratic Change (PMDC) party. This will give him a bargaining card to occupy the position of Attorney General and Minister of Justice or Speaker of the House of Parliament in any APC or SLPP government – at least.

    The present thaw in relationship between the SLPP and PMDC, and the apparent affiliation of PMDC and APC, will increase the odds against the SLPP on winning the next elections. The SLPP will be ‘cornered’ in the South-East and the combined forces of the APC, C4C and PMDC will knock the ‘new direction’ SLPP off-course, and produce an ethnic minority President for the APC, in the name of Chief Alhaji Sam Sumana.

    Dr Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella (KKK) and his National Grand Coalition (NGC) party would not be able to exert sustainable opposition to the APC. As unlike the PMDC, it is operating in the wrong territory – Kambia district or Tonko Limba, an APC stronghold. Since the country’s politics has the tendency of a ‘winner’s takes all’ scenario, the people of this region will eventually fall back to the APC in order to secure a fair share of the pie.

    All in all, with the alliance of the APC,C4C and PMDC, the SLPP will have no chance of winning the 2023 parliamentary and presidential elections; it will just be a repeat of the 2007 elections. They will be very tough elections, but the APC will prevail. Check it out.

    • VOILA! You have said it all Mr.Alimamy Turay. That C4C, APC and PMDC ALLIANCE has become real than ever. As you rightly said, the 2023 CAMPAIGN has already started. Not good for any sitting president and his party two years intp their reign. Should the SLPP be worried or nervous? You tell me.

  3. I thought the title “Chief” added to his name would have put some sense into today’s opposition leaders. Gone are the days when political thuggery was tolerated in this country. The sympathy for chief Sam Sumana is long gone because it seems he has justified why he was deleted from his own party. Sam should be very careful while on his political quest. This is a no nonsense government.

  4. Mr maturi you are one of those guys in this forum whose perspective I love,and agreed with in most times due to your accurate moderate and non partisan views..but your response to my statement,you missed my key point.You didn’t get it.I have to tell you.No hard feelings brother.

    I know you took time to read my comments but it’s just that,the last two sentences of my piece,you did not get.You could have understand them as well had you read through.Instead you gave me an insight that I had already acknowledged in the same piece you took out of proportion.

    Let me be clear once again that, Sam Sumana is popular,he is loved,he is a force to be reckoned with,and all other added qualities he has had since he decided to run for president but, he still dont have a bigger fan base like apc and slpp to even come close to the 55% threshold set aside by NEC let alone clinching a general election victory in SL.THAT WAS MY POINT!

    He is a political heavyweight right now in Sierra Leone,well popular,well loved I get all of that..but that once again,is not enough for him to become president of the people’s republic of Sierra Leone but could serve as a pressure and a decider for the bigger candidates like apc and slpp.That is why he is a force to be reckoned with!

    • Thank you very much Mr. Sulaiman Jalloh. We are on the same page in terms of this issue. I will now categorically inform you that I respect your views and what you are talking about. In terms of the number of supporters/electorate, you are right. No questions about that.

      But in terms of making the difference in any election victory by the APC or the SLPP, then the C4C will be the referee. The C4C might say for example, they want their party to have the presidency before any support. Don’t forget that Chief is a second generation APC.

      It is possible that he positions the C4C to coalesce with APC to become leader and clinch the presidency. I don’t think anyone in C4C would hate seeing them coalesce with any party to become PRESIDENT. That is my concern and the concerns of many. People will just love to see that.

      I appreciate your humble questions and skepticism about me. This is how a respected platform and respected decent people should approach each other. I am open to any criticisms and always make sure to reply respectfully and responsibly.

      Thanks for bringing your concerns and I hope to have given you the right response. Be rest assured that I respect you and everyone on this platform, although sometimes tend not to clarify things. Finally, one more time, I absolutely respect your views. We are on the same page but on different sides of the same coin.
      Thanks and May GOD BLESS YOU Sulaiman.

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