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Youth Minister warns Youth League aspirants: ‘No vacancy at presidency’

September 15, 2016 By Alusine Sesay

Minister of Youth Affairs, Bai Mahmoud Bangura has issued a stern warning to his co-contestants that he still occupies the position of president of the ruing All People’s Congress Party (APC) Youth League, adding that there was no vacancy for the enviable position.

He emphasised that he was seeking re-election and that “there’s no vacant position for the Presidency of the National Youth League of the APC.”

He was addressing journalists yesterday at the party’s headquarters on Old Railway Line in Freetown.

Mr. Bangura’s pronouncement came after Lawyer Ibrahim Yusuf ‘Beloz’ Bangura declared his intention to contest for the presidency of the APC Youth League.

‘Beloz’, as he is fondly called, had astutely presented his position on the ‘Good Morning Salone’ breakfast programme on FM 98.1, and political pundits are of the view that his move must have triggered the pronouncement by Minister Bai Mamoud.

Speaking during the presser, the Youth Affairs Minister noted: “I said there is no vacancy because I am still holding the position and I shall be running for a second term as my chances are glaring with the endorsement of the Youth League executive.”

He opined that he was in charge as president and all those who had declared for his position were on a futile journey.

“Those spectators who want to contest for my position must go through the screening process as specified by the APC Youth League,” he said.

He informed the public that he was Chairman of the All Political Parties Youth Association (APPYA), and that he has greater chances of being re-elected as president.

He explained that the Youth League was mandated by the National Advisory Council (NAC) and the National Leader and Chairman, President Ernest Bai Koroma, to run their convention this October.

“The League is an autonomous body that has full control over it affairs with the approval of NAC, and whatever we do is in line with the agenda of the party’s hierarchy,” he stated.

He continued that the party has a calendar for their mini conventions which do not affect the National Youth Conference.

He disclosed that the National Youth League conference for this year would commence from 21st and end on 23rd October at the Bai Bureh Hall in Port Loko.

“This is not the first time we are having our National Youth League Conference before the mini conventions. In 2004, the convention that ushered in Kabba Osaio as president was conducted before the mini conventions,” he said.

He added: “After that conference, we went for all the mini conventions and the National Youth conference in 2005. APC is an institution and not a social club.”

Bai Mahmoud reminded his audience that on 22 October, 2015 the Youth League inaugurated and hosted it first annual conference as a platform for young party cadres to deliberate on issues hinging on progress and sustainability of the party in power.

He said it was a chance for them to have face-to-face talk with senior party stakeholders and to further interact with the party’s national Chairman and Leader, President Ernest Bai Koroma, once every year.

On his part, Public Relations Officer of the League, Alhaji Dauda Bangura, said the executive was united and fully behind Bai Mahmoud Bangura.

He added that they have heard about various declarations from the regions and Diaspora, but many have endorsed Bai Mahmoud to continue as president.

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