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Last Updated: Nov 15th, 2012 - 22:31:18 
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EDITORIALS  

IMCís Sealed Lips as SLPP Incites Armed Forces
By Aruna Turay
Nov 15, 2012, 17:14
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The countryís so-call Independent Media Commission (IMC) which has the constitutional responsibility to monitor what comes out in newspapers, magazines, and television channels and radio stations, seemed to have been deeply penetrated by politicians that its Commissioners have decided to sit and allow the Sierra Leone Peoples Partyís (SLPP) Unity Newspaper to ignite malice and enmity between the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF) and the Operation Support Department (OSD) of the Sierra Leone Police (SLP).

 

On various editions of the SLPPís Unity Newspaper in the past few days, they have been carrying front page articles aiming to ignite hate between the two forces, despite several attempts by the hierarchies of the two professional forces to distance themselves from being dragged into the countryís politics.

 

On the front page of Unityís Tuesday 6th November 2012, they published an article captioned, ďAPC Sojas to Cause Mayhem on Polling Day?Ē. Noting that the toothless IMC took no action against them for such an inciting publication, the newspaper went ahead on Monday 12th November 2012 carrying another inciting front page article with the caption, ďIll-Equipped and Demoralized: SL Darfur Peacekeepers to be WithdrawnĒ.

 

In this article, the SLPP demoralized the countryís forces and also made fake allegations that have the tendencies of igniting the military against the government of the day if not for its professionalism.

 

Getting a smooth ride over this, pampered by IMC Commissioners, the SLPP again on the Unity front page of yesterday 14th November 2012, carried another even more dangerous article captioned;


ďAfter five years of neglect, Ernest finally imports ĎGuinea Guineaí uniforms for the army, ESPRIT DE CORPS, SOJA NA SOJA, SOJA NA BIG AWO!Ē.

 

This article aimed to ignite hate and malice between the countryís armed police OSD wing and the soldiers.In a whole nonsense, the article alleged that the APC government is favouring the OSD as against the RSLAF, adding that the government has been catering for the OSD and according to them, has done nothing for the soldiers in the military.

 

Such articles are malicious, inciting, dangerous, and have the tendencies to create mayhem and war in the country, especially at this crucial moment of the countryís electoral process.

 

Awareness Times yesterday contacted IMC Commissioners by telephone to elicit their position and views on such security outrage in our midst.

 

The Chairman, Rod MacJohnson, granted us an interview when we asked him to comment on the Commissionís position over such dangerous media excesses of the opposition SLPP.

 

According to Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson, the Commissionís Complaints Committee was only yesterday finally meeting to discuss what should be the Commissionís position on the articles, despite the fact that the SLPP Unity has been publishing these articles for close to a week now with impunity and regardless of the Forces warning for soldiers and police to be left out of politics.

 

It could be recalled that a reporter at Unity newspaper, named Kelfala Dukulay Marah aka Kef Dukulay has once written in the same newspaper that indeed the SLPP mouthpiece had treated the IMC with scorn by refusing to honour IMCís invitations with regards what the paper has published.

 

At the time, Kef was responding to a press release issued by the Journalists for Attitudinal and Behavioural Change (JABC) recently. JABC alleged the IMC was overtly biased in favour of the SLPP. It is crystal clear now that JABC is right; the opposition SLPP enjoys undue favours from IMC.


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