From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
Terror Inflicted in Sanda Magbolotor Chiefdom in Sierra Leone
By Augustine Samba
May 10, 2010, 11:36

By Augustine Samba

90 years old Paramount Chief of Sanda Magbolotor Chiefdom, P.C. Brima Sanda Sorie III has informed the Awareness Times that, the Chiefdom Administrator(C.A.) and the Local Unit Commander of the Districtís Police Operations recently terrorized his chiefdom.

According to the Paramount Chief, his subjects and some of his chiefs were seriously manhandled, molested, and disgraced by the Police and Chiefdoms Administrator.

"I am the highest authority in that chiefdom, if any other authority wants to do anything there, I must be consulted" he said, adding that the Police and the C.A. went to his chiefdom without notice and "wrecked havoc on my people."

He however informed that he was not at the scene when the incident allegedly happened and he also confessed that even when he was called by the C.A. to go and see his people who were arrested he refused. Therefore, to assess the nature and scale of brutality, the Awareness Times spoke to the six injured and wounded victims who were arrested and detained at the Port Loko Police Headquarters.

Mr. Mohamed B .Y Kamara, a primary school teacher of Gbanehloko Village told our reporter that the C.A. and the LUC went to their village with troops loaded in 2 vehicles, a police land rover and a black jeep. He said, as the vehicle arrived he was the first to be arrested on the grounds that he writes and reads bad letters for the people. He disclosed that, the police also gave warning shots with live bullets fired in order to create panic in the village.

"The police arrested me because the treasuring clerk pointed me as he alleged that my name was on the Wanted List of the CA", he informed.

A pupil, Dauda Bangura who uttered a statement that the police were creating another war, told Awareness Times that he was seriously beaten with sticks by the treasuring clerk, the CA, and all the police officers ganged up together. Another detainee also told our reporter that, the pupil was asked to locate the place where the "tabuleh" drum was, but he did not.

Another eye witness, Mayeleh Bangura said the police also broke into her motherís room and took away the "tabuleh" drum. She said her husband a stranger, Mr. Amara Bangura and her father were also pointed by the CA to be arrested.

The newly elected chiefs of Gbanehloko and Pateful-Ma-Forki villages were also manhandled and arrested by the police. According to the Pateful-Ma-Forki chief, Pa Adekally Bangura, he was arrested together with his friend, Santigie Kamara. He informed that, his room was vandalized by police officers.

Pa Alimamy Bangura the new town chief of Gbanehloko Village claimed that the Police and the CA were led by one Abu Sankay, Abdul Kamara, and Abdulai Sesay who dragged him from under his bed where he had sought refuge when he heard gun shots.

Ishaka Bangura, another victim said he was arrested at Sendugu, the Chiefdom Headquarter and seriously manhandled by police officers.

One Santigie Kamara told this reporter that, when they were arrested and brought to Senduguís Court Barray the local chiefs attempted to go to their rescue but were vehemently resisted by the police. He said, the CA asked the Senior Section Chief, Pa. Alimamy Timbo, why he went on to crown new town chiefs but Chief Timbo told him that he was ordered by the Paramount Chief to usher them from the Kantha ceremony and crown them.

After a while of detention at Sendugu, the victims report that they were taken to Port Loko police cells where they were detained from the 4th to 7th May 2010. They report that they were bailed without any charge being preferred against them.

Many of the victims name one lady (name withheld until she can be contacted) as being the main antagonist who had promised to teach certain people a lesson.

Meanwhile, latest reports are that the victims including the 90 year old paramount chief are currently taking sanctuary at the Gbeti Compound, Brima Lane in Freetown.



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