JOB says APC gov’t mismanages economy
July 31, 2017 By Patrick Jaiah Kamara
Erstwhile Chairman and Leader of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP), John Oponjo Benjamin has told a presser that the ruling All Peoples Congress (APC) party has mismanaged the economy to the extent that the country was now categorised as the fastest collapsing economy where interest rate is the highest in the sub-region, with inflation sky-rocketed in double digits and growth stunted.
Mr. Benjamin was speaking on Friday (28 July) at his office on Campbell Street in Freetown on his position to renew his commitment to lead the SLPP in March 2018 elections.
“This country is facing a serious economic crisis as a result of bad management of the economy by the APC government,” he said.
The economist cum politician said the collapse of the mining sector and the falling commodity prices should not be used as a yardstick by the government for the collapse of the economy, as he claimed that one of the biggest mining companies -Africa Minerals was hounded out of Sierra Leone by the government’s failure to protect them.
In his press statement, Jong Benjamin claimed that government cancelled the license of London Mining Company which transferred its mining rights to TIMIS Company, on the grounds that it did not pay its royalty for (6) six months, which he said was not true.
“What they did was to cancel TIMIS Mining Company’s license and lease agreement and awarded it to Sierra Leone Mining Company, whose directors are also directors of TIMIS Mining Company. This forced the TIMIS Mining Company to cease operations leaving thousands of youth unemployed in this country,” he said.
On the issue of his party, he said the current commotion in the party was not a novelty in politics, thus warning people to stop interfering with the internal politics of their party as the SLPP would win the next election.
“I have no doubt that as a party, come the elections in 2018, we will win. The people of this country are yearning for change and we will not disappoint them. It is for this reason I continue to appeal to all members of the SLPP to stay focused and not be distracted,” he said.
He stated that the SLPP was bigger than all of them and that defection was never an option neither does it provide a solution to the many problems facing the country, noting that staying within the party was a far better option.
He said most of the defections from the party at recent times were primarily because of their own selfish individual interests and nothing to do with the interest of the masses.
He noted that the experience of Mr. Franklin Roger, who recently left the SLPP to join the APC was a very unfortunate development and that he was against such decision.
“Mr. Rogers was a very dedicated individual who loved the SLPP. But when some people in the party such as Retired Julius Maada Bio and his supporters continue to intimidate, harass and use violence against other members of the party, it is a serious cause of concern for us as a democratic state,” he said.
On the issue of education, JOB said the sector was nothing to write home about since the APC came to governance the sector has faced the worst crisis in the history of the country as a result of ‘bad governance, corruption and poor wretched policies’.
He made an allusion to the recently concluded NPSE examination where more than two pupils were using one question paper.