It is with shock and sadness that I received the news of the death of Christian Keili, editor in Chief of Salone Times news paper in Freetown. Christian is a cousin of mine.
I was in Freetown in March when Christian was admitted at a private hospital. When I visited him, he put me at ease with his usual sense of humour.
We spoke at length about the state of affairs in Sierra Leone. At one stage Christian reminded me of an interview he had conducted with me over the telephone about my opinion of the SLPP leadership convention in Makeni. He told me that everything I had said in that interview was taken place in Sierra Leone.
Christian was certainly a prolific writer, with Sharpe and fearless independent intellect. Before I started publishing my opinions in the internet media, Christian was the one who published in his Salone Times news paper some of my highly critical articles of the government of president Kabba; even though he is related to the president. This marked Christian out as a writer with conscience, dedicated to serving the public.
I believe he was a true professional with genuine desire to edit objectively. His passing away is a grievous lose not only to journalism but to all those who are interested in knowing the truth.
I was privileged to have been raised in the Keili’s household in Bo. From a very early age, Christian showed talent in writing and artistic skills. That he became journalist was just a tiny bit of his potential. Many more was not seen of Christian and I think an organised country could have gain a lot more from him.
Christian’s contribution as a journalist to our enlightenment is enormous and his passing away will not extinguished our love and respect for his honesty and commitment to fair play.
My thought and prayers are with all family members especially to his mother -Aunty Agnes Keili whose Christian faith will surely guide her through this painful period.
May his soul rest in perfect peace.