March 20, 2015 By Mohamed Massaquoi
As the legal and political dust raised following the sacking of Vice President Chief Alhaji Sam-Sumana was yet to properly settle down, President Ernest Bai Koroma yesterday moved to appoint veteran politician Victor Bockarie Foh as Sierra Leone’s new vice president, to the consternation of many weary Sierra Leoneans.
Foh, who until his appointment yesterday was Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, was administered the oath of office by the President shortly after his announcement as the new VP at a ceremony held at State House.
The embattled former vice president was relieved of his duties by President Koroma on the night of Tuesday March 17, thus triggering a heated debate among some sections of the Sierra Leonean populace as to whether the President’s decision has any legal merit.
This followed the expulsion of Chief Sam-Sumana from the governing All People’s Congress by the party’s National Advisory Council (NAC) on allegations of anti-party activities, among others. All this had been happening while the beleaguered Sam-Sumana was serving a 21-day self-imposed quarantine following the death of one of his bodyguards to Ebola.
The sacked VP had issued a press statement that he would challenge the President’s decision to relieve him of his post at the Supreme Court as according to him, he was elected by the people of Sierra Leone and not appointed by President Koroma.
It could be recalled that new Vice President Victor Foh was part of the mediating team headed by former Vice President Solomon Berewa that recently visited Mr. Sam-Sumana at his Hill Station quarantined home to talk to him into resigning from his position as vice president.
“The general public is hereby informed that following the vacancy which occurred in the Office of the Vice-President, and pursuant to Section 54(5) of the Constitution of Sierra Leone…(Act No. 6 of 1991), it has pleased His Excellency the President to appoint Mr. Victor Bockarie Foh as Vice-President of the Republic of Sierra Leone with immediate effect,” a release from State House states.
Mr. Foh hails from the Southern Region of Sierra Leone and has served in many capacities in the APC, including Regional Chairman South, National Assistant Secretary General, and National Secretary General.