January 13, 2017 By Joseph S. Margai
Chief of Staff at State House, Saidu Konton Sesay, has dedicated a documentary film on Sierra Leone war titled “From war to peace” to late President Tejan Kabba, whose efforts brought the war to an end in 2002.
Saidu Konton Sesay, who was speaking at the premiere of the $25,000 documentary film at the British Council last Friday, said the late President Kabbah made a lot of effort to end the war.
“The premiere of this documentary film was a good way of commemorating 6th January 1999 when the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels stormed Freetown and destroyed lives and properties. The movie brings memory of what happened on that day and it would help those who did not witnessed it to know what happened on that fateful day,” he said.
He added that because of late President Kabbah’s leadership qualities, the war was ended.
Terry Leary, the sponsor of the documentary, said she had lived in Sierra Leone twice- working as a Peace Corps for the United States Government and recalled that she witnessed the war in the country and learnt that there were lots of child soldiers.
“During that period, communities were frowning at allowing child soldiers to be reintegrated. When I came back in 2014, I learnt that all of the child soldiers were reintegrated into the communities. I thought it was a good example for other countries that have gone through wars to emulate what Sierra Leoneans did,” she said. She added that she sponsored the documentary because she wanted to hear stories on how child soldiers were reintegrated.
She said she would use the documentary film to promote Sierra Leone everywhere she goes in the world, noting that they would see the film and the proceeds would go to the people that participated in it.
Isata Jabbie Kabbah, wife of late President Kabbah, said Sierra Leoneans learnt a lesson during the war that no matter the bad governance, injustice, corruption, etc., they will not be urged to take arms again to fight.
“Women were raped, lives and properties lost, and that is why we should always embrace peace which is a valuable asset. Late President Kabbah laid his life to bring peace to Sierra Leone and that should not go in vain,” she said.
The producer of the documentary film, George Lewis, who also works at the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), said he decided to do the film in order to bring back the memories of what happened during the war.