From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Breaking News
SLPP Flagbearer Aspirant Ritchard Mbayo Defects to APC in Sierra Leone
By Awareness Times
Jan 10, 2011, 21:19

The Sierra Leone Broadcasting Television has just shown live video footage of President Koroma at his Hill Station Lodge this evening where he was warmly receiving erstwhile opposition Flag bearer Aspirant, Prof. Ritchard T. Mbayo (photographed) into the folds of the ruling All People’s Congress party.

Prof. Mbayo was presented to APC Leader President Koroma by APC Eastern Region Chairman Diana Konomani who handed over to President Koroma a signed Letter of Resignation from the SLPP which she informed had been already delivered to the SLPP Leadership before the arrival of the entourage at State Lodge.

Following this, an assurance of Prof. Mbayo’s dedication to the APC was made by Vice President Chief Sam-Sumana to President Koroma who also indicated that Mbayo had formally left the SLPP and “rejoined our great APC party”.

Speaking at the occasion a few minutes ago as televised nationwide, Prof. Mbayo told the world that he has sent in his resignation letter from the SLPP and he has “no regrets”. He also said he “owed no explanation to anyone except President Koroma” and that he was quitting the SLPP “with a clear conscience” as according to him, it was “the right thing to do” as the APC was where he had always “rightfully belonged”.

It was when President Ernest Koroma, as APC Leader took to the microphones that SLPP members realised just how much they had been hoodwinked all this while by Prof. Ritchard Tamba Mbayo.

President Koroma in his address to the gathering has just revealed to a shocked Nation that Prof. Mbayo had all this time been considered as an APC supporter even prior to the 2007 Elections that saw the SLPP losing power to the APC.

President Koroma explained that he had “established contact” with Professor Ritchard Mbayo a “long, long time ago” since the days he was the Opposition Leader and that Professor Mbayo “helped the APC even before 2007 with lots of support and exchange of ideas”.

According to President Koroma, they within the APC, had “always regarded Dr. Mbayo as one of us” and that he, as APC Leader, personally had “no doubt” in his mind that Mbayo was “strongly committed to the APC”.

President Koroma urged Prof. Mbayo and his immediate family to “work with a clear conscience within the APC”.

Meanwhile, Awareness Times can confidently state that contrary to the assertions of Prof. Mbayo that he had sent a Letter of Resignation to the SLPP National Executive, no member of the SLPP Executive had received any such letter. Many SLPP National Executive members contacted a few minutes ago have expressed nothing but “shock” at the National Television Broadcast. What has left them baffled is the deliberate decision by Prof. Mbayo not to formally inform them but to allow them to learn of his defection over the television airwaves.

The question now on many lips is how many more of the SLPP Flag-bearer Aspirants are merely APC Moles within the SLPP. It will be recalled that at least three National Executive members of the SLPP had been uncovered by either the media or SLPP activists to be nothing other than APC Moles passing out information from within the SLPP to the APC and also attempting to create anarchy and confusion within the SLPP at the slightest possible opportunity given to them. Two National Executive Trustees from the East and North, whose undercover activities were uncovered, have already quit the SLPP and taken up membership within the ruling APC thus leaving SLPP members to be wary of many within their fold with the exception of a very few dedicated and loyal SLPP members.

Awareness Times remains actively seized of these developments.

© Copyright 2005, Freetown, Sierra Leone.