July 4, 2019
By Mohamed Massaquoi
Minister of Information and Communications has referred to recent students’ impasse at the Fourah Bay College, (FBC) University of Sierra Leone as ‘lawlessness and a flagrant disrespect for law and order’.
Mohamed Raman Swaray said the government of President Julius Maada Bio will not take it lightly with any individual or group of individuals who create public disorder and disturbs peace and stability of the state.
He made the above statement yesterday at the Mary Kinsley Auditorium at FBC where hundreds of students gathered for a public lecture on the Multiple Cluster Survey organized by the National Council for Civic Education and Development (NaCCED) in collaboration with Statistic Sierra Leone and UNICEF.
Swaray observed that it was disheartening that students who should serve as role models in society were bent on creating problems not only for the university authorities, but also for the civil populace.
He added that government was very much concerned about the violent nature in which a student union election debate ended a week ago at FBC and called on the university authorities to take serious actions against perpetrators.
“Students are ready to create mayhem out of every opportunity they get. When we were here some 25 years ago, we enjoyed participating in serious debating competitions on campus, but that is not the situation anymore. This time, simple debate will result into violence activity and students will destroy property. Another major concern of government is the issue of examination malpractices. We want to ensure that our children get quality education and we cannot achieve that when students are gravely involved in examination malpractices,” he said, adding that President Bio believes in peace, stability and the development of Sierra Leone.
The university authorities had banned students’ union activities and elections on FBC campus due to certain violence activities of students during elections. A few months ago, the University authorities lifted the ban, giving a green light to students to continue student union activities and elections.
Before the elections at FBC, the Ministry of Tertiary and Higher Education again banned students’ union activities leading to the suspension of the election as a result of violent activities.