By Mohammed Legally-Cole
Amidst the evening dusky tide on Thursday 11th August 2016, Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy and his entourage including staffs of the Sierra Leone Embassy in Banjul arrived in Guinea Bissau and where they were received with marvelous welcome at the Imperio Hotel by a cross-section of Sierra Leonean community based in the country. The Ambassador and his entourage traveled through a long journey across three borders (From Jiboro in Gambia through Ziguinchor in Southern Senegal then into Guinea Bissau) in four hours continuous driving.
Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy held a brief discussion with elders of Sierra Leone community at the Sala de Nino Vierra lounge at the Imperio Hotel were he thanked them for their wonderful welcome and also discussed the planned agenda for his meeting with the Sierra Leoneans presently based in Guinea Bissau.
Ambassador Daramy also visited several ministries and states dignitaries including the Secretary of State for International Cooperation Eng. Augusto Poquena, Director of International Cooperation Mr. Marcelo Pedro D’Almeida, Chief of cabinet International Cooperation Mr. Darboe, Foreign Affairs Chief Protocol Officer Mr. Liberto Gomez, Special Adviser to the President Jose Mario Vaz and also Adviser on Migration matters and former presidential candidate Mr. Empossa Le, Director General of Immigration Mr. Leno Lopez and Director General of Communities Mr. Malam Sambou, P.R.S. deputy Captain Mario Fambe, Former presidential candidate and leader of APUG and also second in the run-off presidential election Mr. Nuno Na Bian etc. All these meetings were fruitful and the Guinea Bissau officials used these brief meetings to inform the Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy that Sierra Leoneans presently based in Guinea Bissau are the most peaceful, law abiding and free from criminal activities.
Ambassador Sullayman B Daramy and his entourage were accompanied by Mr. Mohammed Nasiru Deen – Adviser for Cooperation, Trades and Investment at the Guinea Bissau Embassy to The Gambia and who also serve as Special Adviser to the Minister of Tourism in Guinea Bissau facilitated these meetings.
AMBASSADOR SULLAYMAN B. DARAMY MEETS WITH SIERRA LEONEANS IN GUINEA BISSAU.
In another engagement, Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy and his entourage including senior staffs of the Sierra Leone Embassy in Banjul meets with a cross-section of Sierra Leoneans presently based in Guinea Bissau in what he called a family meeting on Saturday 13th August 2016 at the SOS complex in Bissau.
On the high table was Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy, Head of Chancery Mr. Andrew Kamara, Mr. Empossa Le the Special Adviser to The president of Guinean Bissau – Jose Mario Vaz, and Mr. Nuno Na Bian – Opposition leader and presidential candidate on the run-off election in the Guinea Bissau presidential election. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Abdul Malik Kamara.
After listening to various speakers at the meetings which includes Mr. Andrew kamara the Head of Chancery of the Sierra Leone Embassy to The Gambia, said H.E. Sullayman Daramy is a seasoned diplomat with wealth of experience and wisdom in the diplomatic service and also dub the name ‘the Game Changer’. He is a keen listener and he will respond to each of their issues adequately if given the support by all. He informed them that the embassy is aware of what is going on in Guinea Bissau and advised them that “in this world, Leadership is always an appointment from God.” He assured them that the Sierra Leone Embassy in Banjul is with them and will continue to support them provided they are properly organized, law abiding and continue to be crime free in the country they find themselves.
Mr. Hassan Conteh – Chairman of the All People’s Congress (APC) and contender for the disputed Honorary Consul, pray for the opportunity of having high power delegation from Sierra Leone Embassy in Banjul to visit the Sierra Leoneans based in Guinea Bissau. He said that H.E. Ambassador Sullayman Daramy has served as a father for all Sierra Leoneans residing in Guinea Bissau and calling for unity of all Sierra Leoneans in Guinea Bissau and for H.E. Ambassador Sullayman Daramy to ‘plant the seed of peace’ among all Sierra Leoneans in Guinea Bissau.
Madam Kadiatu Kamara (Aunty Kay) Chairlady of the Women’s wing of APC-Guinea Bissau expressed her happiness to welcome H.E. Ambassador Sullayman Daramy and his high-power entourage to Guinea Bissau. She said that this is the first time this type of entourage from the Sierra Leone Embassy had embarked on a visit like this to see how Sierra Leoneans in Guinea Bissau are plying their livelihood out in this country (Guinea Bissau). She prayed for their safe journey back home as they are returning to The Gambia.
Other speakers at the family meeting were Miss Isatu Kamara from the Island of Caravella, Bundu Kamara, Amara kamara – technician by profession, Bayoh Konton Kargbo, Alimamy Rashin Dumbuya, Mohammed kamara chairman for the Sierra Leone Fishermen Association in Guinea Bissau and many others fishermen from the Islands of Guinean Bissau who were affected by the Guinea Bissau Government decision to destroy all makeshift camps commonly known as ‘Campama’ (in Portuguese Creole which mean locally made temporary thatch house) on the Islands, most of whom reiterated and expressed the need for peace, togetherness, understanding and unity among the Sierra Leonean community.
The Special Adviser to the Guinea Bissau president Mr. Empossa Le expressed his profound gratitude to H.E. Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy and his entourage and also expressed special thanks and appreciation to Mr. Mohammed Nasiru Deen for his good and marvelous work to Guinea Bissau.
Special Adviser Empossa said he understood the feelings of the Sierra Leoneans in Bissau especially when they were not properly organized and there is no proper line of representation when they are outside of their country. He also sheared his experience as an emigrant in Spain for 37 years before coming home and later resorted to national political life. He asked the Sierra Leoneans to continue to be patient, law abiding and respect to the authority, adding that Sierra Leoneans are well behaved people and crime free so they should try hard to maintain that good name.
He also said President Jose Mario Vaz has special interest in all the communities presently established inside Guinea Bissau that was why he established the office for Migration issues. He has respect for the emigrants who are working in the country and not those who are idlers. The Special Adviser Empossa Le is begging all the members of the Sierra Leonean community to unite and live in peace.
Opposition leader and presidential candidate in the second round run-off election, Nuno Na Bian also shear his own side of the same story as an emigrant in the United States of America. He said that as an emigrant anywhere in this world it is not easy as been at home. He advised the Sierra Leoneans based in Guinea Bissau to be law abiding, respect for state authority. He also encouraged them to stay focus on whatever they are doing within the law and must always remember that they came from a country and also have parent and loved ones back home who are looking up to them for support and reminded them that all these factors are very stressful. He said his office and home doors are opened to any Sierra Leonean for his support and assistance.
Representatives from all walks of life within the Sierra Leone community were adequately represented in the meeting which served as a breakthrough for peace and a proper organization of the Sierra Leone nationals based in Guinea Bissau on three issues namely:- the Registration of Sierra Leoneans presently based in Guinea Bissau in order organized themselves, the formation of the Sierra Leone Nationals Union (SLENU-Guinea Bissau), and the dispute on the issue regarding who is to serve as Honorary Consul to Guinea Bissau between Mr. Mohammed Nasiru Deen and Mr. Hassan Conteh, which he (Ambassador Sullayman Daramy) has shelved tentatively.
He (Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy – Game Changer) used his wisdom through this marvelous occasion to extend the olive tree of peace to both Mr. Mohammed Nasiru Deen and Mr. Hassan Conteh and encouraged them to work together in sincerity in order to organized the Sierra Leoneans presently based in Guinea Bissau so that everybody will work together as one people. He also advise every Sierra Leoneans based in Guinea Bissau that they are all from the same country and have the same passport, noting that “we must respect each other, have patient and be sincere to work in harmony with each other.
Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy aka ‘Game Changer’ through his wisdom finally created an Interim Committee or Action Group task with the responsibilities to sensitized Sierra Leoneans about the registration and the formation of the SLENU-Guinea Bissau and reports to him within two weeks. These comprised of 5 members representing the Islands, 2 represent Bissau, 1 from Bafata and 2 nominated members etc.
The Interim Committee/Action Group comprises of the following people:-
- Madam Kadiatu kamara (Auntie Kay) – Chairperson
- Abdul Malik kamara – Secretary
- Mohammed Kamara – Committee member
- Bayoh Konton Kargbo – Committee member
- Amara kamara – Committee member
- Salieu Sesay – Committee member
- Gibrila Bangura – Committee member
- Abibatu kamara – Committee member
- Isatu Wapo Sesay – Committee member
- Bundu kamara – Committee member
- Alimamy Kamara – Committee member from Caravella Island
- Hassan Conteh
- Mohammed Nasiru Deen
H.E. Ambassador Sullayman B. Daramy thanked all the Sierra Leoneans presented at the family meeting for listening to him very attentively and Mr. Abdul Malik Kamara gave the vote of thanks respectively