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Re publication by Unity Newspaper Caption: ĎDrunk State House Security Involves in Accidentí dated 14 October 2011 and Standard Times Front page Caption: ĎDrunk DrivingÖ 5 Vehicles Perishedí dated 9 October 2011.
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Oct 17, 2011, 12:58
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Dear Editor,

I am amazed at the manner in which journalists who should speak the truth are bent on maligning citizens of Sierra Leone by publishing garbage about them without verifying the story accurately.

On Saturday 8 October 2011, I was in the forecourt of the Arakan Mess at Wilberforce where I had gone to collect a correspondence.  Some very irate members of the Koinadugu Development Association and security detail attached to State House informed me about damage to vehicles by State House security and an alleged rude behaviour on the part of another State House security.

I came down from my vehicle to apologise on behalf of the State House security for the damage to the vehicles and for the purported utterances that they had made which had infuriated the members of the Koinadugu Development Association.  I even chastised the State House security in front of the aggrieved owners and assured them that I would ensure that the offenders repair the damage to the vehicles and to the wall of the Arakan Mess.  I even prevailed on the State Security to apologise to the aggrieved owners.  They were not drunk at all contrary to the report in the newspapers.

Mr. Edward Marah, a journalist at Standard Times newspaper who is also a member of the Koinadugu Development Association was present and overheard my entire conversation.  Mr. Marah deliberately distorted the facts and placed a misleading report on the 7th October 2011 edition of the Standard Times paper.  This was done purely out of malice because Mr. Marah is fully aware of defamation proceedings I have brought against Mr. Philip Neville and Mr. I.B.M. Kamara of Standard Times newspaper and the case is still pending before the High Court of Sierra Leone.  I will therefore introduce this publication as part of my lawsuit against Standard Times which is still continuing, as proof of a systematic pattern of behaviour by Standard Times newspaper to defame my character.  Messrs. Neville and Kamara will soon have their day in court.

There is not truth to the rubbish that has been circulating in the two newspapers. I have no reason to be worried because my personal vehicle was not involved in any accident and the whole incident had taken place before I arrived at the Arakan Mess. I will therefore ignore the newspaper reports with the contempt they deserve and put them on notice that I will not hesitate to bring legal proceedings against the editors of these newspapers if they continue to publish misleading and untruthful stories about me that are designed to defame my character.

Finda Koroma
Barrister-at-Law


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