International Community, former President Koroma condemn security breach

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By Yusufu S. Bangura

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), United States Embassy in Sierra Leone and former President  Ernest Bai Koroma,  through a separate press release issued on Sunday 26th November, condemned the security breach that took place in the morning hours of Sunday and affirmed their supports  for democracy.

The statements were issued immediately after the some unidentified assailants launched an attack on the military armory at Wilberforce Barracks and key security installations in Freetown in the early hours of Sunday.

The attackers broke the two main correctional centres  and  set free thousands of prisoners.

During the incident, government imposed a nationwide curfew, which was subsequently reviewed after calm was restored.

ECOWAS Condemned the act outright and reiterated its zero-tolerance for unconstitutional change of Government.

The West African bloc underscores its commitment to supporting the government and people of Sierra Leone to deepen democracy and good governance, consolidate peace and security as well as foster socio-economic development.

In his statement, former President Ernest Bai Koroma said “ I strongly condemn the violence that occurred on Sunday. I am deeply concerned that once again our beloved nation could be subjected to such insecurity. I also strongly condemned the killing of Corporal Eddie Conteh, a dedicated military guard assigned to me by the state who was reportedly shot at point blank range, while his colleague, Warrant Officer John Swarray was whisked away from my residence to an unknown location,”  

He noted that any actions, events and pronouncements that threatened to undermine the political and social stability of the state should have no place in a democracy because the path to peace, stability and national cohesion lies in our commitment to democratic values.

The US Embassy in Sierra Leone expressed its unwavering support for the Sierra Leone government and its efforts to restore peace and security in the country. The Embassy urged all Sierra Leoneans to adhere to the government-imposed curfew for their own safety.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms the attempted overnight forceful seizure of Wilberforce Barracks and armory,” the statement read. “Such actions have no justification.”

The Embassy further commended the Sierra Leone government’s security forces for their swift and decisive response to the attack. It also expressed its confidence in the government’s ability to maintain order and protect the country’s citizens.

“The United States continues to stand with all those working for a peaceful, democratic, healthy, and prosperous Sierra Leone,” the statement concluded.

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