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Citizens attribute VP’s expulsion to ‘malice and grudge’

March 10, 2015 With Patrick J. Kamara

The ruling All People’s Congress (APC) last Friday (6 March) expelled the Vice President, Alhaji Chief Samuel Sam-Sumana from the party on the grounds the he had been behind the attacks on government officials in his home town of Kono; that he had formed another political party whilst he is still a member of the APC; and that his degree obtained from the United States was falsified.

Concord Times’ Patrick Jaiah Kamara went round and about Freetown to get the views of the citizens on this development. Below is what they told me…

Issa N. Sillah – Trades in lubricants along Circular Road

When I heard Umaru Fofana reporting the news on the BBC that our honourable Alhaji Chief Sam-Sumana has been expelled from the APC party, I felt very bad and disheartened. That political party belongs to all of us, because I voted for it during the 2012 multi-tier elections. So before taking a sensitive decision like that, they should have consulted us the grassroots members of the party. I only hope the decision they’ve taken is in line with the APC constitution, and if not, I sense big trouble for our party not too long.

The allegations that Mr. Sumana carries a false degree and that he is not a Muslim are just ways and means to humiliate him and finally get rid of him in the party. The Second Gentleman of the State has served the APC government for about eight years. Why are they only now coming up with these stories? The question is why now? This is pure malice and grudge.

Religion should not be used to humiliate political opponents; somebody can be a Christian today and change to Muslim overnight, depending on one’s beliefs. During the electioneering period, even Ernest Bai Koroma used to attend Friday prayers in various mosques across the city, but that does not make him a Muslim.

In a nutshell, the APC is only doing this to distract our attention from the issue of the blood samples intercepted at the Lungi airport; the huge Ebola funds that are yet to be accounted for; and just to create bad blood and hostility among members of the party and citizens of this nation.

Bamie K. Tarawally – Architect, Fergusson Lane

I’m bereft of an appropriate adjective to describe the way I felt when I heard of the expulsion of the Vice President from the APC. To expel him from the APC party is definitely setting this country on a time bomb, because many of us voted the APC because of Chief Sam-Sumana, and not President Koroma. Had it not been for the State of Public Emergency, we would have staged a peaceful protest to the President’s office. This decision is very unfair on the Vice President.

For the past three years we have been hearing of something like a cold war between the two men who are at the helm of the county’s affairs, which to some of us is very much bizarre. Even the international community will be laughing at the party because of this unfortunate decision. Our people say: two good heads are better than one. The marginalisation of the Vice President may be one of the reasons why we are suffering, because a divided house can never stand.

This crooked decision taken by APC stalwarts is definite sign of the end of their era in the governance of this country. All the allegations imputed to the Vice President are mere fabrications just to get rid of him. This is a very dangerous precedent being set in this country.

To me, all their obsession is to remove Sam-Sumana from the position of Vice President. And knowing our laws, they could have their way. According to the 1991 Constitution, it is clear that you can’t be a candidate to contest for the position of Vice President if you are not a member of a political party.

Abdul Bangura – Civil Servant, Wilberforce village

I am a staunch supporter of the APC but honestly all the claims they made against the Vice President are baseless and unfounded. Where were they when the VP presented the so-called fake certificates and they can’t pick it up until now? Where were they when this man made a pilgrimage to Mecca? Which part of this country that has never witnessed any political tension, especially when awarding political party symbols to candidates? Their decision is very unprofessional.

I will describe this particular decision as a monumental blunder on the part of the party, which goes to show that some members of the party, especially the leaders, have had deep-seated malice and hatred for the Vice President. This is sheer ingratitude to a man who played a leading role for the APC to return to power in 2007. He had dedicated his time and resources to the party, now look the way they have treated him.

The APC party has defrauded this nation if they can now say the Second Gentleman of the State had fake certificates. I think it is high time we started scrutinising all the certificates of ministers and other State officials. They are not telling us the truth; we are afraid for them not to one day sell this country.

Where is the evidence that the VP was not a Muslim? He has gone to Mecca and has even built a mosque in his compound at Murray Town.

If the VP has thugs, then those thugs belong to the APC party. They are only shouting about this because Chief Sumana is not in their good books. In my opinion, it is the Minister of Local Government that has been undermining the VP just because it was she who brought him to the party.

Mariatu Sadiatu Sessey-Coker – House wife

Since the start of this government’s second term, there has always been a very frosty relationship between President Koroma and his vice. So I was not surprised when I saw the news on social media that VP Sam-Sumana has been expelled from the ruling APC for reasons that his certificates were fake, and that he had 100 thugs in Kono that have been attacking government ministers.

To me the APC is bringing tribalism in the party. They want only Northerners to be at the pinnacle of all government business. Take for example the Ebola response team, almost all of them are from the North.

Also, it is the usual habit of the APC to use one compatriot to fight the other. That was exactly what had been going on. Chief Sam-Sumana is being fought by his own Kono sister and brothers in the government. It happened with F.M. Minah – a Southerner, his own brothers were used against him.

The APC stalwarts have taken this decision out of malice and grudge. There is no veracity in all what they are claiming, not at all. I will state, without fear, that this government has not been truthful to the people of this nation.

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