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COMMENTS & OPINIONS  

My Favourite Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ again!
By Sylvia Olayinka Blyden
Apr 1, 2011, 17:26
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I see my favourite Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ is wielding his pen again. ‘Usman Bangura’ says he is not Abass Bundu’s alter-ego but he knows so much about Abass Bundu to the extent of even being present and knowing details of unpublicised sums given to Bundu at two separate incidents involving first the BBC and later, London Times. Marvellous man!

 

Anyway, let’s move on to my points for today. According to Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’, the sustained highlighting by Awareness Times of the unfitness for purpose of a presidential bid of Maada Bio, has not made any impact on the minds of SLPP delegates but has given Bio ‘sympathy’ and additional supportive delegates to the extent that Maada Bio is now the number one man whom SLPP delegates believe will go on to redeem SLPP and bring their party back to power at 2012-Sharp 12!

 

‘Usman Bangura’ is even claiming that Maada Bio’s Camp ‘easily replaced’ delegates not in support of Maada Bio. That may have been so and affecting a total of only TWO delegate positions (Moyamba District Chairman and Southern Region Youth Leader) but are these two replacements even really in support of Maada Bio or pretending to be, so as to get their peace of mind in a situation where violence and intimidation alongside tribal stoking are the order of the day? Wahab Rogers, the replacement of Ken-Kamara had openly declared for Dr. Soyei and he is yet to publicly renounce his support for Dr. Soyei. Smart Sennessie the replacement for Jonathan Dambo is yet to openly declare that he is for Maada Bio. No other delegate was changed in the South whilst attempts to change delegates in other regions, were spurned just as they were spurned by Bio’s own Bonthe people!

 

Poor ‘Usman Bangura’ has still not absorbed the hard fact that Maada Bio hails from Bonthe where key re-elected SLPP delegates in Bonthe have not only publicly rejected Bio’s candidature but have actually revealed how the Bio Camp has been using huge amounts of cash to try to buy over those delegates they could not hoodwink with tribalism or intimidate with violence.

 

It was Alhaji Boie-Kamara who had been unfairly accused of buying delegates but the Bonthe people have now revealed who is the real delegate-buying aspirant. Of course, we all know who it is who has a bunch of violent ex-combatants threatening to stab and break the limbs of SLPP persons on and off the Party Office premises. Now, courtesy of the people of Bonthe, we also know who has been buying delegates’ votes: No less a person than Retired Lieutenant Maada Bio’s Camp has been bribing SLPP delegates!

 

If I were Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’, I would read DEEPLY into the recent revelations of SLPP Bonthe’s Young Generation Leader, Sheku Sheriff and re-advise myself. I would also quietly ponder at the prediction of Ahmed Ken-Kamara that Southern Province voters will simply stay away from the polls in protest at Maada Bio’s candidacy and compare it to the Dr. Abass Bundu prediction that the ‘Maada Bio factor’ will see 100% voter turn-out for SLPP. I would then ponder at the 2.2% kind of SLPP votes in Moyamba and the loss of SLPP inside Moyamba where Maada Bio’s mother reportedly hails from. After this, I would make salient conclusions.


One thing I know for sure is that Maada Bio does not have the delegates’ support as Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ self-deludes himself. SLPP delegates are much smarter than Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ thinks. Many SLPP delegates trust and confide in me and I know what I am saying when I insist that whatever ‘majority support’ that Maada Bio thinks he has bought with cash, lured with tribal sentiments or violently intimidated to his side, is really a mirage. If there was ever a textbook case of ‘Empty Buckets Make the Most Noise’, this is it.

 

Let us wait for the SLPP Delegates Convention which is when we will know whether SLPP Delegates are truly ‘a Bunch of Stupid People’ (a la J.T) who can be bought with cheap tribal propaganda, promotion of violence and raw cash bribes. Or in the alternative, whether SLPP delegates are a smart group of fore-sighted party representatives. I submit that the majority of SLPP delegates belong to the group of smart folks who are not at all ‘a bunch of stupid people’.

 

I know of delegates who have publicly declared for Maada Bio but have confided in me they have NO INTENTION of voting for Bio at the SLPP Convention but simply declared to get peace in the face of the violence, intimidation and tribal stoking that delegates were facing!

 

JOHN BENJAMIN:

SLPP’s National Leader and Chairman is the only person who can call up and preside over a NEC Meeting and until the next Party Convention, that position is held by John Oponjo Benjamin. JOB is a charismatic figure and one of the few persons within the SLPP who has an image not tainted by any form of corruption. I am always challenging his detractors that John Benjamin is NOT a corrupt man. Benjamin is also a selfless politician who has served the SLPP very well. Like all of us humans, he has his failings but he remains one of the best political leaders this country has ever produced. He is also humble and always willing to take the fall rather than expose his SLPP party to ridicule.

 

As an aside, let me firmly state that only chauvinists with parochial upbringings will publicly say that John Benjamin should possess the ability to instruct a female publisher friend of his as to just how she should think and write. The men making such public statements are indirectly exposing just how contemptuous they really are about the ability of a woman to be able to hold and disseminate her own opinions devoid of a male influence! They are simply indicting themselves for the kind of primitive men they really are. A sad commentary on them!

 

Anyway, let’s move on. John Benjamin was NOT wrong to be amongst the majority of SLPP members who know intra-party elections are a recipe for disunity and disharmony especially against the backdrop of 23 Aspirants wanting to become Flagbearer and influencing who become elected executives and by extension, become delegates.

 

Dr. Abass Bundu was amongst the SLPP members who made not a squeak of opposition to the Motion to extend the tenures of office at the January 29th 2011 SLPP Convention. Infact, he even came out in smiles and was amongst those loudly applauding the extension as the correct thing to do. He even renounced his previous position whilst chatting with other delegates. Will Dr. Bundu now like people to see him as a man who sways with the wind? Surely not! However, it is at times like these that alter-egos could come in very useful.

 

Intra-party elections at this time make it more difficult for the party to consolidate for the 2012 Elections. And who can honestly look at the kind of violence that has taken over the SLPP because of aspirants-interference in Elections and say John Benjamin or any of the majority of SLPP members was wrong to have chosen an extension of tenure over elections at this time? What honest person will look at the unfolding discordant situation and not know the unanimous decision of January 29th 2011 taken at Bo Party Conference, was THE BEST ONE?

 

By the way, let me ask Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ which sane, right-thinking SLPP delegate will remove John Benjamin from the SLPP Leadership and put Dr. ‘Usman Bangura’ or any of the names we now hear being mooted? Some of the names are interesting.

 

SLPP’S WATERSHED MOMENT:

The point that Dr. Abass Bundu and Maada Bio do not yet seem to understand is that outside their small circle of loud noise-makers within the SLPP, very few sober-minded Sierra Leoneans are envisaging Maada Bio as SLPP’s Flagbearer let alone President of Sierra Leone. With all the skeletons in his cupboard, even the thought that Maada Bio could emerge as a possible leading contender is a serious indictment on the SLPP! To make matters even worse, here is Mr. Maada Bio’s Camp unashamedly using Violence, Bribery, Intimidation and Tribalism as tools to win the Flagbearer position.

Bottom-line, if key SLPP members from Maada Bio’s home Bonthe District could publicly denounce the attempts to bribe them to support their own son, then what says the rest of us about his fitness for purpose? Go figure! This is SLPP’s Watershed moment.


© Copyright by Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

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