Sitting Councillor from Wilberforce, Franklyn Bode Gibson who is currently serving as Head of the Freetown City Council’s Committee for the Planning, Development, Security and Management of Freetown has been announced as Mayoral candidate for ruling All People’s Congress (APC) in November 17th 2012 elections. This is according to a decision of the party’s Freetown Municipal Electoral College.
The decision of APC’s Electoral College saw Bode Gibson poll 106 votes with his nearest rival, the current Acting Mayor, polling 56 votes.
The full results were:
Councillor Bode Gibson 106 votes
Acting Mayor Gibril Kanu 56 votes
Mr. Theo Nicol 35 votes
Rev. Gibson 30 votes
Dennis Williams 12 votes
Bishop Christian Cole 2 votes
Winston Ojukutu-Macauley 2 votes
Musu Hajanatu 1 vote
Eustace King 0 vote
Reports are that even though Gibson did not poll the required 55%, the runner-up, Acting Mayor Gibril Kanu declined to go into a run-off with Gibson and instead congratulated him as the winner whilst calling on all his supporters to back Gibson as the one chosen by God.
His Excellency Osman Foday Yansaneh, Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to Ghana, who chaired the electoral college sitting, called on the losers to take heart saying that in an internal party democratic context, there will be winners and losers but the party should always be seen in the end as the winner as the party superseded all else.
Awareness Times spoke to many of the members of the electoral college after the exercise to seek their views on the outcome. It was clear that they placed high premium on Franklyn Bode Gibson’s unquestionable loyalty to the APC, his humble disposition, his penchant for honesty and his renowned kindness amongst their reasons for choosing him. He was described as a honest person who has never been named in any corrupt practises throughout his two terms as an APC councillor spanning the last eight years since 2004.
One of them said that when he suddenly lost his wife, “the first person who arrived at my house that morning was Bode Gibson. I was in shock but Bode just took over things for me and helped me to make the needed arrangements to transport her corpse to the mortuary.
I will never forget his kindness and selflessness that day”.
Another person explained of how when he once suffered from an armed robbery attack, “It was Bode who quickly rushed to my residence with policemen as soon as I phoned him in distress that night”.
Another APC member said he respected the stance taken by Bode Gibson “to raise an alarm within the APC party in September 2006 when he suspected that certain things were being done dishonestly under a former Mayor”. He said even though Gibson was later viciously attacked by that former Mayor, “his humility and love for the APC made him to keep quiet and not answer back in newspapers where the former Mayor had waged war on him. Rather, he limited his bitter complaints to within APC circles so as not to subject the APC to public laughter with an APC Mayor exchanging words with an APC sitting Councillor”.
In summary, it appears a mixture of committed loyalty, honesty and humility propelled Franklyn Bode Gibson and catapulted him into his landslide victory for the APC symbol.
We will subsequently bring you the full profile of the gentleman who might most likely clinch the coveted Mayor of Freetown seat, come November 17th 2012.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.