Ex- service men graces commonwealth celebration in Sierra Leone


March 14, 2017 By Kerifalah Janneh

Sierra Leone Ex-service men Association (SLESA) yesterday joined their Commonwealth counterparts to commemorate this year’s Common Wealth Day with the theme “A Peace-building Commonwealth day.”

But a member of the association, Richard Bassie, noted that he served in the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces for 18 years, but has been receiving Le40, 000 per month as pension since he retired in 2005.

“But for all of these I didn’t regret because I fought for my country honestly and diligently. I deserved a better pension. If we the retirees are living a better life, that will definitely motivate young people to join the army,” he said.

“I have five children and all of them are going to school. How could I support them with the Le40, 000 which I received monthly as pensions?”

He called on Non-Governmental organisations to empower their membership, noting that the military is a very good institution of learning and discipline.

Reading the Secretary General’s message, Civic Leader, Richmond Sanoh said the Rtd. Hon Patricia Scotland QC was closed to the completion of her first year in office.

According to the statement, the time has been uplifting to see a remarkable range of circumstances and contexts that strengthen the Commonwealth connection and flourishing in action for the benefit of all.

He said the shared values and languages, similar institutions of democratic governance & administration, and the common law makes it easy for them to understand one other and to discuss obstacles and opportunities with the aim to work together for the common good.

“Deep-rooted and resilient commonwealth solidarity bears us up individually and collectively. It helps us in troubled and troubling times to make the world a safer place. That is why this year we are celebrating ‘A peace building Commonwealth,” the statement reads.

Earlier, Jusu Sanoh, who reads the affirmation, said joining together as members of one worldwide commonwealth community, valuing the personal dignity and worth of every citizen and raising the flag as a symbol of the ties of kinship and affinity, were highly cherished by all.

“We draw inspiration from our diversity, and the opportunities for working together as a rich source of wisdom and powerful influence for good in the world. We affirm our commitment to upholding the values set out in the commonwealth charter, to serving one another in a spirit of respect and understanding and to advancing development, democracy and cooperation locally, nationally, and internationally,” the affirmation reads.

Secretary General for SLESA, Retired Lieutenant Colonel Fatorma Gottor, called on all ex-service men to identify themselves with the association.

He said the association helps to bring all ex- men together and help improve their lives as most of them are living miserable lives.