POLITICO NEWSPAPER: WELCOME BACK
Well, you are reading Politico for the first time in many weeks. Our editorial comment has answered questions about that. Since we've been away, a lot has happened. Most important of all, Ebola, the dreaded killer has been killed - well, for now, at least. The Liberians next door thought they were home and dry before the devil slipped through their fingers again. Logus Koroma's ONE HUNDRED BUSES debate has come and gone. Has it? The ACC says he has no case to answer before the law. But what about the Court of Public Opinion and the Ballot Box in two years time? By the way, please, we beg the IMC not to ban Politico like they did to Monologue. We understand they are very protective of Logus in particular. We are simply speaking like Sierra Leoneans concerned about the way things are going in our country.
Another project propagated by Logus Koroma - the 3rd Term for De Pa Campaign, so soundly trounced not too long ago, has risen from the grave like Lazarus with a confused so-called youth leader flying the RED kite. And our MPs are also on the move with the MORE TIME issue.
During the same period, Isha Johansen was finally thrown out of office by the government. The SLFA had continued down the path of total intolerance of opposing views from among its members; Criminals slaughtered people on the streets of Paris, again, domestic maids from Sierra Leone continued to be treated worse than slaves in oil-rich Kuwait and the APC election-winning machine rolled through Constituency 107 with a military vehicle in tow...but old IB Kargbo scraped through in Bombali, taking severe pounding from lowly Kamarainba. Osman Yansaneh's explanation of how a military vehicle came to be found in the middle of a government political rally is good comic relief as we close the year.
How about our RASTAFARIANS going to Justice Cowan and asking for Marijuana-smoking to be legalised? That looks very sensible. Weed smoking is all over the place, completely unchallenged by the law and now criminals are making huge profits. Why not legalise it and help the HAJA meet her tax threshold. Don't just criticise.
EBOLA IS DEAD, EBOLA IS GONE, EBOLA MIGHT COME AGAIN
Seriously, we have to thank and congratulate every Sierra Leonean for playing their part in the war against Ebola. We will never forget what Ebola has done to Sierra Leone. How can we forget? Cemeteries are full and the nation's international image is in tatters once again. In fact, it's even worse than it was during the war. There are many countries today that have locked their doors on us. We know they unnecessarily panicked as their media went wild with stories and pictures of Sierra Leoneans dying in good numbers. So we will never forget that.
We will not also forget how parliament conducted an inquiry into the corruption that rocked the management of Ebola funds. Now we can say that those who told us in the beginning that the whole parliamentary investigation would end up in a farce, were correct - NO ACTION SO FAR. NO CONVERSATION ON THE FINDINGS OF THE PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY.
The situation in Liberia tells us, we are still not out of the woods yet because Ebola could return. We can only ask God to help prevent that.
Meanwhile the triumphalism that followed that WHO declaration of the end of the outbreak in this country was totally unnecessary when more than THREE THOUSAND Sierra Leoneans were sent to their untimely graves by Ebola. IS EMERGENCY RULE STILL IN PLACE?
MORE TIME CAMPAIGN ROLLS ON DESPITE LUKE WARM OFFICIAL DENIAL
An old muckraking journalist said this many years ago - "NEVER BELIEVE ANYTHING UNTIL IT IS OFFICIALLY DENIED". So we will approach the MORE TIME CAMPAIGN from that standpoint. We first heard the slogan MORE TIME at a birthday programme for De Pa somewhere in Freetown. Those who sang the birthday song and shouted MORE TIME were completely out of tune and definitely out of step with the majority of Sierra Leoneans who feel insulted and are looking at Burundi with great foreboding.
The point is, De Pa himself can easily close down this very dangerous campaign by simply telling his boys - and they are mostly boys, to shut up because he was now completely fed up with sycophancy. We cannot understand why he hasn't decisively dealt with this issue.
We have seen pictures of traders, motorcycle taxi boys, drivers and such groups in various social media platforms carrying MORE TIME banners. We have also seen a badly written press release from a so-called youth group calling for De Pa's time in office to be extended because, according to them, Ebola disrupted the second term. We will not glorify that nonsense by wasting space on it. We can only say that by that logic, George W. Bush would still be in office today because the war in Iraq is still raging. Laurent Gbagbo would also be in Abidjan because that country is still not stable. Would any president leave office? They would all simply create problems in the middle of their terms and call for extension to deal with the same problem. Ebola was an unfortunate occurrence. We have dealt with it two years to the next presidential election. So what is all this sycophancy about More Time? Elections MUST GO ON IN EARLY 2018. NO CHANGE.
MODERN DAY SLAVERY IN KUWAIT: SIERRA LEONEANS ON THE EDGE
We are waiting for a comprehensive statement from the government on reports of Sierra Leonean domestic workers being very badly treated by their masters in Kuwait. This issue will never go away. Many ordinary people who couldn't speak out yesterday can now find their way on social media platforms to communicate. Some of the videos we seen and the audio clips we have listened to are simply disgusting. Those we saw and heard from in those social media clips are in hell. And we have an embassy in Kuwait.
Our ministry of Foreign Affairs has this habit of refusing to speak on the plight of Sierra Leoneans abroad. This newspaper helped bring the plight of many Sierra Leoneans in Libya to the world not too long ago and we found that ministry an unwilling partner as we investigated that story. It cannot be right that the ministry should refuse to address such vexed issues even when Sierra Leonean lives are said to be at stake. What's the point of having political leaders if they cannot protect their citizens abroad?
All Sierra Leonean domestic servants in Kuwait should be brought home IMMEDIATELY. All those agents who facilitated their movement to that country should be arrested, tried and punished if found wanting.
WHEN A MILITARY VEHICLE APPEARS IN A RED MOVEMENT CAMPAIGN RALLY
The RED Movement wants the issue of the military vehicle that was found in the middle of their political rally recently to go away. We are very sorry to tell them that we will keep it in the headlines until they come totally clean about what really happened on that day.
And we've been following the government's badly conducted battle to free themselves from accusation of using state advantage in elections, contrary to the PPRC Code of Conduct. We shall return to the PPRC in the coming weeks. At present, we are carefully studying their actions against opposition parties in relation to breaches of the Code of Conduct. We will share our finding with our readers. Nobody is above the law.
1. When the story broke, amateur APC Spin Doctors told the world, the vehicle in question was a private one. Then we zoomed in on the registration number and nailed that lie.
2. Meanwhile a defence ministry spokesman was quoted in a newspaper saying the ISSUE WILL BE INVESTIGATED. In Sierra Leone, that simply means the matter is dead. Sorry people, we will not allow this one to die.
3. Now, Osman Yansaneh, the Secretary General of the RED Movement has told a local radio station that in fact, those soldiers may well have been arresting members of CRIMINAL CLIQUES who are busy terrorising the nations these days. How funny!
4. Going by his logic, was this a MAC-P operation? Can they quickly make public the warrant by which those soldiers were deployed in aid of the police as he suggested?
5. Is Yansaneh telling the nation that those "CLIQUE" members were under arrest even as they danced and shouted in line with the partisans on the ground? Where were those who arrested them in that vehicle?
6. Were those who according to Yansaneh could well have been arrested for violent conduct taken to any police station to be charged? Can we have the records please?
7. You see, instead of Yansaneh apologising to the nation for the embarrassment caused by Pallo Conteh's overzealousness, he is busy weaving a spider web around himself with such incredible versions of the reality that is on all social media platforms right now. Yansaneh, please try another trick. We are too intelligent for this low tech one.
(C) Politico 21/12/15