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EDITORIALS  

We care about Sierra Leone Mr. President!
By Awareness Times
Mar 16, 2006, 12:17
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When we published in our Monday March 6th edition under the caption, "Guinean Soldiers terrorize Kambia District" our concern and indeed the concerns of the thousands of Sierra Leoneans that were under the apparent mercy of the brutal Guinean forces, this seems not to have gone down well with certain people in our society and more especially His Excellency the President.

He is reported as having said that the issue was blown out of proportion by certain sections of the press.

Well, we want to make it firm and clear that we have no regrets for what we did in the interest of our cherished compatriots that were suffering hell in the hands of a brutal invasion force, while our government and indeed our President watches with reckless abandon.

That has been the case as well with Yenga, where Sierra Leoneans have been left at the mercy of these same Guinean invading forces with this government making no proactive move to ease their plight as citizens and indeed save the territorial integrity of country.

As it is, Sierra Leoneans of Yenga descent have been forced to move away from their mother land to seek refuge elsewhere or remain in virtual servitude in their own land but under the neocolonialism of not a white Super Power nation, but a poor destitute African state, honouring to herself the audacity to claim land of a neighbouring country and subjecting its citizens to all forms of inhuman treatment.

But this is all predicated on the fact that this government is not serious over the welfare of its citizens nor concerned over their protection. This is a fact!

Starting with Yenga, there is not a single media outlet in Sierra Leone that has not written gruesome stories on the situation in that part of the country as it affects the citizens. There is hardly a single civil society organization in the country that has not made public pronouncements either singly or collectively on the Yenga situation.

This government and our President continues to pay deaf ears to all these much to the detriment of the state. Rather, it claims to be backing on quiet diplomacy, a step that is seen as a mere ploy by this government and perhaps the President to quietly sell out that portion of land to the Guineans. That by all indications was what was apparent with the Kambia situation involving the same Guineans.

Up to Monday, 13th March, newspapers were reporting another round of violence and mayhem as perpetrated by the Guinean forces against innocent civilians in Yenga. Instead of this government coming up with a strong statement that will sort of engender nationalism and patriotism in Sierra Leoneans, President Kabbah only had the pleasure in making his usual anti press rhetoric that it is blowing the issue out of proportion. What a defeatist President! What a disappointing President! What a President whose lackadaisic attitude towards national issues and concerns draws doubts over his true citizenship!

Yes, questions abound in several quarters that President Kabbahs snail-paced approach to the Guineans diabolical actions against the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the state of Sierra Leone is deliberate and that he is in a way giving back.

We are not endorsing this insinuation, but we are very doubtful as far as President Kabbahs actions with regards these incidences concerning Guinea are concerned.

This has even caused Sierra Leoneans as human beings to be looked at by Guineans as pawns. They have no respect for Sierra Leoneans. Dont tell me an individuals international respect is derived from his or her performance. In international relations, a citizens respect sprouts from where he comes from, and depends very much on the quality and the performance of his or her government internally and externally.

In the case of Guinea, they have measured our governments incapability to react to their actions as tied to the government's very impotence. As far as Guinea is concerned, Sierra Leone is a safe haven for them. Perhaps that is the principal reason why Kabbah is suppressing even the most radical in his government to cool on the issue of Guineas disrespect of our sovereignty, because that was where he sought refuge on two separate occasions when he was chased by junior elements of the military.

What we are telling President Kabbah in this regard is that no matter what his interests are in Guinea, we will not be silenced from making any noise relating to our territorial integrity. If he cannot talk or take any proactive action on these infringements, we are going to do it. And if he does not like it, he better seat down and allow others to do the trick at least for the attention of some others concerned.

It is very clear that President Kabbah is not bothered the least with these infringements.

In this vain therefore, we want to register our support to the suggestion put forward by the Honourable Ombudsman, Francis Gabiddon that the issue of Yenga and of course Kambia be taken to the International Court of Justice in The Hague for arbitration.

This in our view is the only plausible move that can ensure respite for Sierra Leoneans settled on the borders with Guinea in the years to come. We are very confident that the portions of land claimed by these Guineans are bonafide lands of the Republic of Sierra Leone.

Further more, it is our candid submission that a contingent of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces be deployed in the areas of dispute to at least provide succour for the oppressed Sierra Leoneans in those areas of the country.

We are aware that these will not be given any due consideration, all because there is a very strong knot that has tied down this governments action.

We therefore want to re-echo to President Kabbah that we care for Sierra Leone and whether he likes it or not, we will continue to shout and cry for Sierra Leone once we feel her sovereignty and integrity is been threatened. We cannot be seen as a state mortgaging these very crucial aspects of our existence.

We care Sir, Mr. President. Do You?


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

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