July 7, 2020

Titus Boye-Thompson, London

Opposition politics has always been burdensome but the situation in Sierra Leone is such that those who have just left power were unprepared for their current state so the body politic is dying off practically and figuratively.  In the past moths, the All Peoples Congress has lost some of its big guns even as the party is being challenged by an aggressive governing party in power who have branded the APC party membership as ‘terrorists,’ allowed for arrests of political opponents under trumped up charges and has engaged in a campaign of aggression against members of the opposition. 

It is high time the APC Party comes to the realization that it is being killed off by its own selfish ways. The Party faces widespread dissent, it is currently embroiled in a court case against which an injunction is in place banning any and all party activities unless with the consent of those who have taken it to court for malpractices in the governance and administration of the party’s affairs, yet the leadership continue to reject any meaningful attempts to reform or introduce new blood in the running of the party’s affairs. There are no flag bearers anymore, so this assertion that the infighting in the party is for flag bearer position is wrong and misleading. The major fight within the party is for a review of its own internal procedures, for transparency and adherence to democratic principles of governance and administration. In short, the Party is being sued to introduce reforms that would make it more democratic and answerable to its membership in an era wherein Political observers agree that there is only one way to settle the problems we have in the party and that is to come to the table and deal with the main issues that divide us. 

While this internal imbroglio is taking place, the Party is losing some of its very influential members to natural deaths, imprisonment and incarceration under false pretences and trumped up charges. Many believe that reason why our people are facing such untimely death is due to the pressures on them. Those who should take on the mantle of leadership and plan for the future of this party are being constrained from doing so because of loyalty to an individual who still refuses to loosen his stranglehold on the Party. 

The APC cannot breathe but its leadership who have their knees on its throat are not letting go. The result is that this once noble and glorious party is being choked to death by dejection. Our up and coming leaders are being held to ransom and most of them cannot stand up and speak against the oppression they face. In the end, they are dying off in shame!

We need to do something to get this party back on track otherwise it will lead its most ardent supporters to another defeat in the next elections. Against all these difficulties faced by the party, it was disgraceful to read some of our people writing with celebration that the APC Chairman and Leader has been invited along with his wife and a few top brass to meet and dine with President Marda Bio and his wife at State Lodge. 

It is with grave concern that many should feel that this is in itself a measure of a lack of shame from the leadership. Questions are being asked as to what good can come out of such a meeting and the manner in which it is being touted, as if it is a matter of pride, that the Party Chairman should go out and dine with a government that has caused its supporters and the country as a whole such grief and trouble. What would the average APC supporter gain from such a meeting apart from being ridiculed? What food or drink does our Chairman and Leader need that he cannot provide for himself or what company can he not enjoy with ordinary APC folks unless he goes in to be told off for not being able to control his “terrorist” supporters?  Why should our very distinguished mother of the nation, the respected Madam Sia Nyama Koroma be put through such an embarrassing experience of  being lectured on mob justice by Fatima Bio?  Why do these people have to keep selling us out every day as if they have no pride for themselves? 

Yet we sit idly by as families mourn and bury our disgruntled dead, our men and women succumb to disappointment, disillusionment, embarrassment, shame, wrongful arrest, prosecution, persecution, incarceration and dejection! Somebody needs to do something ad quickly, otherwise we would collectively have to say adieu to a once glorious political institution.