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FROM OUR TEAM  

Email Exchange between Awareness Times and SLPP-NA Scribe
By
Aug 5, 2011, 21:46
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Date: Fri, 5 Aug 2011 13:24:34 -0700

From: murtadhat@yahoo.com

Subject: FROM THE SLPP NORTH AMERICA SECRETARIAT

To: awoko71@hotmail.com; concordtimes100@yahoo.com; democratpress@yahoo.com; exclusivepress@yahoo.com; soriefofana@yahoo.co.uk; smanjoroka@hotmail.co.uk; newvisionpress2@yahoo.com; editornewpeople@gmail.com; boozavic@yahoo.co.uk; premiernews_sl@yahoo.co.uk; newstormnewspaper@yahoo.com; standardadverts@yahoo.com; satellitenewspaper@yahoo.com

CC: slpp_australia@yahoo.com.au; SLPPUK@LISTSERV.TAMU.EDU; murtadhat@yahoo.com; slppcontinentaleurope@yahoo.com; stejansie@yahoo.com; jjsaffa@yahoo.co.uk; blydenso@hotmail.com; pkmuana@gmail.com; afallay@aol.com

 

The SLPP North America secretariat regrets the inconvenience caused by a minor editorial oversight in which our party's Chairman and Leader, John Oponjo Benjamin, was referred to only as "Chairman."

 

We continue to admire and respect our chairman and leader, and the SLPP North America region which is led by Chairman Augustine Boss Fallay re-states its congratulatory message thus. Julius Maada Bio is the party's Presidential candidate and we congratulate him too. The secretariat would rather editorial oversights are pointed out than be over-interpreted and made front page headlines in national newspapers.

 

The secretariat appreciates your cooperation, and I look forward to working with you productively.

 

Murtada Tunis

Regional Secretary General

SLPP in North America. 

-------------------------

From: Awareness Times Publisher 

Sent: Fri 8/05/11 9:40 PM

TO:  Murtadha Tunis (murtadhat@yahoo.com); awoko newspaper (awoko71@hotmail.com); CONCORD TIMES (concordtimes100@yahoo.com); Democrat Newspaper (democratpress@yahoo.com); EXCLUSIVE PRESS (exclusivepress@yahoo.com); SORIE FOFANA (soriefofana@yahoo.co.uk); SORIE MANJOROKA (smanjoroka@hotmail.co.uk); New Vision Newspaper (newvisionpress2@yahoo.com); New People (editornewpeople@gmail.com); SLPP MASSAQUOI (boozavic@yahoo.co.uk); Premier News (premiernews_sl@yahoo.co.uk); New Storm Newspaper (newstormnewspaper@yahoo.com); Standard Times (standardadverts@yahoo.com); satellite newspaper (satellitenewspaper@yahoo.com); Awareness Info Mailbox (info@awarenesstimes.com)

CC:  slpp_australia@yahoo.com.au; slppuk@listserv.tamu.edu; slppcontinentaleurope@yahoo.com; Sulaiman Tejan-Sie (stejansie@yahoo.com); JJ Blood (jjsaffa@yahoo.co.uk); PK Muana (pkmuana@gmail.com); Augustine Boss Fallay (afallay@aol.com)

 

Murtada, I will recommend you make the apology and leave it at JUST THAT. Your 'lecture' on what becomes a front page headline is not appreciated from this end. Anyway, you are not fooling anyone. Your 'semantics' was a deliberate attempt and a quick glance at the following extract from a recent Global Times interview will explain why you guys tried to do what you did. One can only wonder what will happen to your party's efforts at reconciliation with the mentality as espoused by Dr. Bundu still haunting your mindset. Our role as true journalists in this country is to figure out subterranean issues that have a potential to misinform and break these issues down to understandable analysis for the common man to chew on.

Following is culled from: http://www.globaltimes-sl.org/news1531.html

 

Global Times: What do you mean?

Dr Bundu: ...Third, at that same Bo Conference, Benjamin showed himself to be a man for whom defeat will never be a travelling companion. He demanded and obtained from the Conference an amendment to the style and title of his office. It was changed from National Chairman to National Chairman and Leader. Delegates who sympathised with this demand could not have foreseen the hidden recipe for confusion that this change conceals. Since the founding of the SLPP 60 years ago through to the restoration of multi-party democratic dispensation by the 1991 Constitution of Sierra Leone, all persons elected to the office of National Chairman of the SLPP have been content with that title except John Benjamin. From Sir Milton Margai to Sir Albert Margai to Maada Salia Jusu-Sheriff to Reverend Paul Dumbar to Maigore Kallon to Dr. Sama Banya to Alhaji U.N.S Jah, not one ever quibbled with the title of National Chairman. In 2010, the SLPP National Chairman revealed himself as a man with a vaulting ambition who can scarcely sit still and be contended with the title that had enamoured all of his predecessors. For him, nothing short of the title of National Chairman and Leader will do.

The question we must ask is what did the SLPP gain from this change of title? Surely the answer is sweet nothing. Only Benjamin can answer what he gained from this combination of titles. When one man combines in his title the offices of Chairman and Leader, what is left for the flagbearer of the Party when he is elected? In protocol terms, who takes precedence, the Presidential Candidate or the Chairman and Leader? What if there is disagreement between the Chairman and Leader on the one hand and the Presidential Candidate on the other? I am sure the rank and file of the Party would have no difficulty gravitating towards the flagbearer automatically as their Leader once he has been elected and for all practical purposes that would be the status quo. So why did Benjamin insist on being called National Chairman and Leader if it is not to create a platform for obfuscation and for generating misunderstanding and confusion?

That there is an essential difference between the two titles is trite. The National Chairman is the political and administrative head of the Party. In other words he is the man whose responsibility it is to manage the affairs of the Party and to promote and protect the interests of the Party and its members. The Leader of the Party is the person who is the standard bearer of the Party, the presidential candidate, who provides the vision, direction, and policies that every member of the Party then articulates in a presidential and general election campaign. That these two roles should be kept separate and distinct is eminently sensible; to combine them in one person is to make for authoritarian or dictatorial tendencies.

 

Global Times: What then are you seeking from the delegates?

Dr. Bundu: To elect me as the National Chairman only. I would most definitely expunge the appendage of Leader from my official title. That nomenclature more appropriately belongs to another person elected as the standard bearer of the Party. And I stand ready to serve, promote and protect whoever is elected as flagbearer of the Party.

This is not just semantics. Delegates should see this as one important difference between me and John Benjamin. As National Chairman, I am ready to put all my skills and experience as a politician and an administrator at the disposal of the Party and the flagbearer that it selects. I have never antagonised nor am I at loggerheads with any of the flagbearer aspirants and I am ready to work with whoever is chosen by the delegates conference. Now imagine a situation where the person calling himself National Chairman and Leader is already engaged in open hostility with one of the aspirants and that aspirant gets elected as flagbearer. It takes no imagination to predict that there will always be friction between them, a perfect recipe for electoral failure for the Party especially when such friction filters out to the electorate as it is wont to do.

#

FULL INTERVIEW ON: http://www.globaltimes-sl.org/news1531.html

 

CLICK BELOW FOR RELATED ARTICLE:
New Battle: Who is the SLPP Leader? Citizens Advocate takes a look at a brewing crisis within the SLPP


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