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NEWS  

Sylvia Blyden Challenges Sierra Leone Government - "Name My Political Party!"
By A Correspondent
Aug 14, 2010, 18:18
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"Let them Name My Political Party!"

"The Govt Doth protests too much!"

Dr. Sylvia Blyden has reacted to the Sierra Leone Government document issued against her on Friday August 13th 2010 by saying the only political party she has ever been a member in, was the YOUNG PEOPLES PARTY (YPP) of which she was the National Party Leader during the Year 2002 Elections but which party is now defunct. She is thus now openly challenging the Ernest Koroma APC-led Government in Sierra Leone, to name the political party that their Press Release claims she is a member of.

"Several times in the APC Government's document, they reference what the Government claims to be my political party but they do not name this supposed political party of mine to which I belong. Well, I am now openly challenging the Government. If they are a credible Government, let them prove their credibility by naming my political party I belong to and on whose behalf I am supposed to be working!" Blyden told some journalists who visited her in Freetown on Saturday August 14th 2010.

Sylvia Blyden also derided the Government by saying the document released against her by the Government was not a Press Release but "a whole booklet".

"That was not a Press Release. It was a Pamphlet. It was a whole booklet they wrote and repeatedly read out over and over again on television and radio against Dr. Sylvia Blyden. To paraphrase William Shakespeare in Hamlet, the Government doth protests too much!" Sylvia Blyden insisted.

"It was a very long pamphlet written by a very jittery Government who wish to divert attention away from how equipment supposedly worth well over two million dollars could technically fail to broadcast at 19:00GMT on Sunday August 1st 2010 and also divert attention away from how this two million dollars equipment could manage to develop technical problems that caused it to lose the recording of a one hour programme recorded between 10:00GMT and 11:00GMT on Saturday July 31st 2010."

"We are speaking of two technical problems that the Government and the SLBC need to explain to us all concerning equipment purchased by the Government for the SLBC. First, the technical problem that caused SLBC to lose the contents of the one hour recorded programme and secondly, the technical problem that caused the station to go off the air for a period of thirty minutes at 19:00GMT on Sunday August 1st 2010," Blyden said.

Blyden however said aside the issue of the "technical problems" cited by both the Government and the SLBCs Patrick Tarawalli, the credibility of the Government was at stake if they failed to now state the name of the political party that the APC Government categorically asserts she was a member of.

"Look my fellow journalists, we are speaking of the credibility of a whole Government here. Let us leave aside all the other questionable contents of the entire bulky pamphlet like the mysterious technical problems and concentrate on just the issue of the Governments claim that I am working for a certain political party which I supposedly belong to. The true fact is that I am not a member of any political party. How can a whole Government reduce itself to publicly making such self-mockery claims?" Blyden pointed out.

Speaking on the threat by the Government to invoke the Public Order Act of 1965 against her for allegedly intending to "create a state of anarchy" in the society over her hard criticism of the re-appointment of Christiana Thorpe as Elections Boss which re-appointment was despite the strong resistance of the main opposition SLPP Party and her criticism of the grossly illegal sacking of other duly appointed Electoral Commissioners, Dr. Blyden chuckled.

"State of Anarchy? Public Order Act? Ha ha ha! I am not at all intimidated! It is as if the Koroma Government is fighting to justify my concerns that President Koroma is behaving like a dictator with no regard for constitutional provisions. How can my saying the truth about the dictatorial tendencies of President Koroma lead to Anarchy? On the contrary, when I highlight his unconstitutional actions, it helps to ensure we do not go back into the anarchy of Siaka Stevens and Joseph Momoh days," Blyden opined adding that in her view, the Government was "just joking".

"The Government is just joking by threatening to use the 1965 Public Order Act. They know they are joking and I know they are joking. They just have to be careful that they do not reduce themselves too much into being seen as a Government of Jokers!" Blyden heartily laughed.

About the allegation that someone at State House tried to interrupt a programme she was participating in, Blyden responded by saying, "The first incident happened on July 31st and another development was the next day on August 1st when they refused to re-broadcast the programme but the public will note that I wrote my first letter on the issue on August 11th which shows that I had been diligently carrying out in-depth investigations for several days before I wrote that letter. I have said my piece and the Government & SLBCs Director Patrick Tarawalli have now responded whilst SLBC Board Chairman Professor Septimus Kaikai has chosen not to publicly speak. It is now up to the local and international Public to decide on whom they believe."

# END #


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