It was former British Prime Minister Sir John Major who once called on his political opponents to “Put Up or Shut Up!”. It was in June 1995 and the Prime Minister was under pressure from political opponents questioning his leadership. By undermining the Prime Minister’s leadership, Britain’s peace process with Northern Ireland’s IRA rebels was endangered as Major’s authority was being undermined. This was most succinctly put in an open letter from then British Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Sir Patrick Mayhew who wrote in The Times of London that all the commotion around the leadership of John Major was undermining the peace and could cause irreparable damage to Britain’s peace process.
To settle the ‘commotion’ around his leadership, John Major called an unprecedented leadership contest and challenged detractors to either put forward their candidacy or in his words, “SHUT UP” with their criticisms.
“It is time to put up or shut up!” John Major had said.
Indeed, John Major went on to easily retain his leadership because the truth was that the commotion was mere noise from empty buckets.
It is in the same vein that many patriotic Sierra Leoneans are urging the main opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) to bring forward their evidence of vote-rigging or SHUT UP and allow the President to carry on with his mandate to lead this country for the next five years.
Like Britain’s peace process was being undermined by the ‘commotion’ around John Major’s leadership so also is our country’s peace and stability being undermined by SLPP’s commotion with their refusal to acknowledge that President Koroma clearly won the presidential elections and should be congratulated. The SLPP is making a lot of commotion without any substance.
Every patriotic Sierra Leonean and every relevant world body have called on the SLPP to channel their grievances through the Supreme Court. SLPP has been asked to make their case of elections rigging to the Supreme Court. However, SLPP is refusing to challenge the results in Court. This is laughable. All the commotion they have been making for some ten days now is just a bunch of empty buckets making loud noise. The truth is they have nothing to take to the Supreme Court! Absolutely nothing! These SLPP jokers have no case to present!
This brings me to my main point for today. One of the biggest headaches President Koroma faced in his first term, was his Information advisers’ inability to recognise and swiftly deal with bad media. There is a difference between mischievous media and evil media.
It was in latter days of his first term that the President painfully realised who the real media enemies of this country were and who were the truly patriotic journalists in this country. Many citizens who voted for him are with the hope that President Koroma has learnt from his bitter experience.
However, though the elections are over, some evil journalists are still under the impression that they can continue to pull the wool over the eyes of the public as they hatch more schemes to promote their hidden opposition agenda whilst pretending to be good journalists. One such evil human being is Sorie Fofana.Few weeks to the elections, in a bid to influence the gullible foreign observers, this absurd fellow wrote of me as being an axis of evil. He also described me as a “snake”. I had ignored his ranting then because I did not wish to be distracted prior to the elections. I had more than enough on my plate.
Let me tell him now that he is the evil person. Like a green snake in green grass, he had ingratiated himself to the President lulling Ernest Koroma into a false sense of confidence only for him to unveil his true colours when he felt it was too late for Koroma to save himself from the cage, Sorie and others thought they had him inside.
Sorie Fofana is evil; pure evil. He has enjoyed a lot of credibility he does not deserve as he lobs outright lies and falsities on his newspaper pages and to gullible diplomats who gobbled up all the nonsense he would feed to them.
This fellow’s latest scheme is now to promote the stupid impression that indeed the SLPP has a credible case of having been cheated in the recent elections but that they did not trust the Judiciary’s Supreme Court to give them justice they deserve so they will not take their case to the Supreme Court.
Let me shoot Fofana’s evil nonsense down immediately!
Section 137.(2).(a) of the Sierra Leone Constitution states that the Chief Justice or any of her Judges, “may retire as a Judge at any time after attaining the age of sixty-five years”.
Specific local and international documents in the possession of this writer clearly indicates that the current Chief Justice of Sierra Leone, Her Lady the Honourable Haja Umu-Hawa Tejan-Jalloh was born on April 16th 1949.
This means the current Chief Justice is now 63 years of age and not due for retirement until at least 2014 (two years from now).
However, in his usual lying evil ways, Sorie Fofana yesterday stated that SLPP should not be going to the Supreme Court with their so-called evidence, because, he claims and I quote: “The Judiciary is not independent. The current Chief Justice, Haja Umu Hawa Tejan Jalloh has reached the age of retirement. She wants to continue in office. Can such a person give any judgment in favour of the opposition against the government?”
The above from Fofana is not only malicious rubbish but it is a textbook case of seditious libel. Fofana’s nonsense is seditious.
First of all, it attempts to legitimise the opposition’s unfounded claims of elections rigging by insinuating that rigging evidence exists but they (SLPP) can’t take it to court because the Chief Justice is a dishonourable woman who will not give them justice. Secondly, it is setting the stage for the legitimacy of this new regime to be questioned in the minds of gullible SLPP supporters who will walk around believing they indeed had a case of elections rigging but were cheated and could not go to the Supreme Court because of an over-aged Chief Justice.
This is why the President, the Government and the Fourth Estate should continue to insist to the opposition SLPP and Julius Maada Bio, in the words of Dr. Christiana Thorpe, that they are free to head to the Supreme Court and challenge the results.
I also want to call on the Ernest Bai Koroma Government not to wave off this latest gimmick from the pen of Sorie Fofana. It might seem to be insignificant but it is insidious, evil and must be robustly challenged. The mistakes of the first term where the APC Government was pliant as it was roughed up unfairly in the media, must NOT continue in this second term. I hope someone is listening. Some of us love this country too much to see the likes of evil personified as Sorie Fofana, get away with their years and years of pushing evil on the populace and claiming it is good. Sierra Leone deserves better. Sorie Fofana and his ilk must be immediately stopped from destroying this country any further than they have done!
The SLPP and their evil operatives like Sorie Fofana cannot hold this country to ransom nor should we allow them to blackmail us. Talk of UN diplomats pampering Maada Bio's intransigence has angered citizens all over.
If SLPP has evidence that elections rigging took place against them, let them put it up now at the Supreme Court or forever SHUT UP! In the words of John Major, it is time to Put up or Shut up! Thank you very much.
© Copyright by Awareness Times
Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.