𝐁𝐲 𝐒𝐨𝐫𝐢𝐞 𝐅𝐨𝐟𝐚𝐧𝐚
“𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒊𝒆𝒔𝒕 𝒘𝒂𝒚 𝒕𝒐 𝒍𝒐𝒔𝒆 𝒑𝒐𝒘𝒆𝒓 𝒊𝒔 𝒕𝒐 𝒇𝒐𝒓𝒈𝒆𝒕 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒄𝒆 𝒐𝒇 𝒑𝒐𝒘𝒆𝒓”, Niccolo Machiavelli.
Before the May 25, 1997 military coup, the SLPP had lost the power to influence public opinion. Several media houses had been set up by opposition supporters to undermine the SLPP government of Ahmad Tejan Kabbah. The few civil society organizations that existed at the time had been taken over by sympathizers of opposition political parties.
The few newspapers that were sympathetic to the SLPP were left in the state of being uncared for. Opposition newspapers like “For Di People”, “The Point”, “The New Citizen” had a field day as they portrayed the SLPP government negatively.
Some of them even went as far as inciting the Army to overthrow the government. They accused the SLPP government of trying to disband the national Army. They accused the SLPP Government of giving more rice supply to the Kamajors than the national Army. Therefore, the coup of May 25, 1997 did not come as a surprise to many people.
𝐏𝐥𝐚𝐲𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐖𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐅𝐢𝐫𝐞
The “Africanist Press” based in the United States of America has been busy inciting loyal soldiers of the RSLAF to mutiny. They continue to publish details of wages and salaries paid to senior officers and their junior counterparts in the RSLAF. These publications show a significant disparity in wages and salaries between senior officers and their junior counterparts. This is a recipe for chaos!
I remember my encounter with the head of the Sierra Leone Army, Major General Samuel O. Williams. My newspaper was on the verge of publishing a story we had investigated about rice supply to the Ministry of Defence, when General S.O. Williams got wind of the story. He invited me to his office and warned that I should not publish the article because it would incite junior officers to rebel against their superiors. He even threatened to get me arrested if I went ahead with the publication. That was how we decided to kill the story.
Since the APC lost the 2018 Presidential elections, they have refused to accept the verdict of the electorate. They have done everything possible to undermine the democratically elected government. They have stopped at nothing to make the country ungovernable. The APC is hungry and desperate for power. They are prepared to do anything just to return to power in 2023.
When the SLPP lost power in 2007, the APC tried to kill the Party by poaching some key members. They ignited a lot of significant defections from the SLPP.
It has to be said that with the election of John Benjamin as National Chairman/Leader of the SLPP in 2009, the party regained its lost momentum. JOB, as he is fondly called, brought the party back to the limelight. Several party members who had abandoned the party after the 2007 elections started to return to the party and taking active part in party activities.
By the time JOB left as National Chairman and Leader, the SLPP had gained unstoppable momentum. Sadly, the gains made by JOB were reversed by leadership squabbles at party headquarters. His successor, Chief Somanor Kapen failed to preside over a stable party. His decision to boycott the party’s National Delegates Conference in Kenema led to his political demise.
𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐂𝐨𝐬𝐭 𝐎𝐟 𝐋𝐨𝐬𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐏𝐨𝐰𝐞𝐫
Since the SLPP came to power in April 2018, a lot of the people who stood firm with the party in opposition have either been marginalized or have been left to die in extreme poverty. When the party came to power in 2018, hopes were high. A good number of party faithful have been abandoned. No one cares for them. These are the loyal party supporters.
The irony is that, some of the people who did not support the party or did not even vote for Brig. (Rtd) Julius Maada Bio in 2018, are the ones that are now running the show. They have hijacked the Presidency and marginalized loyal party supporters.
Some of the Presidential appointees are busy fighting each other even at the expense of destroying the image and chances of the party in 2023.
Some of them are doing things that are not in the best interest of the party. Some of them are greedy, selfish and very arrogant. They forget to understand that when the party loses power, every party member suffers.
They have magnificent and splendid appearances today because the SLPP is in power. Instead of fighting to keep the party in power, they are fighting to undermine the goodwill that the party enjoys from its loyal supporters.
When the party loses power, some of these greedy and selfish Presidential appointees forget to understand that their splendid lifestyle will change, their children will no longer attend private schools and spend holidays in Europe and America and they themselves will no longer afford to fly First Class and stay in five-star hotels across the world at the expense of the state.
Those party supporters and Presidential appointees who are engaged in petty infighting should henceforth stop and do everything possible to support the party to win the 2023 elections.
Those who know what it means to lose power should endeavor to share their experiences with these new-comers. Power does not come easy! It is time to unite and keep the SLPP in power forever!
One country, One people!