What enemies of President Ernest Bai Koroma are saying in the media about his rule is totally different from what the generality of Sierra Leoneans and the international community and stakeholders are saying about the President. The popularity and the job approval ratings of President Koroma are at an all-time high and there is a distinct and noticeable discrepancy between the noisy cymbals online especially and the people that matter.
SIERRA LEONE PRESIDENTS KOROMA AND U.S. PRESIDENT OBAMA
Our men on the ground who have been observing the recent trends and the explosion of public sentiments in Sierra Leone tell us that the President’s popularity with the people was once again graphically demonstrated when President Koroma stepped out to join the nation in celebrating the 53rd Independence Anniversary. The exponents of the AFTER U NAR U slogan and belief , according to our men in Sierra Leone are not APC fanatics. According to them, it is the young people of the nation, especially the first-time prospective voters in the 2017 Elections. I asked our officials on the ground over and over and the same answers came out : It is the youths leading the call for an extension of the President’s term. It is not the red-shirted APC fanatics. It is not the discredited old politicians. It is not the so-called “vultures” and “vampires” and “sycophants ” , as those writing in protest online have foolishly and idiotically labelled some of us who simply expressed our opinions on the matter .It is the young people.
And according to our men, this is where the troubling aspect of AFTER U NAR UN lies for those busy breathing threats online and demonstrating their uncouth and rustic manners by insulting people for expressing their views. . The youths constitute the largest voting block in Sierra Leone. A country with a massive youthful population, the prospective first-time voters ( Youths who were socialized under the reign of President Koroma and who have known no other President ) are so impressed by President Koroma’s socio-economic and political developments, especially his road and infrastructural developments that they are the ones behind the new sing-song sweeping the nation : AFTER U NAR U. As I said before , it is not misplaced emphasis for Sierra Leoneans to begin debating the issue now because, from all indications, it will definitely be a national call. My question for the zealots and cuss-cuss people online busy expatiating rudeness and poltical intolerance, what if it becomes a national call ? Are they going to bring out war tanks to roll over the largest voting block in the nation ?
So far, State House, in a press release last year, clearly said that President Ernest Koroma is not interested in a Third Term. The President himself has not told anybody that he is interested and that he will be seeking a third term. Only two of the alagbas of the ruling party, Hon. Balogun Logus Koroma and Robin Farlay have openly advocated for an extension of the President’s tenure. Other officials have only been expressing their opinions. I am only reporting what my men on the ground have been telling me. I am still not advocating that President Koroma must seek a third term. Iam only reporting what my men on the ground are telling me about the source of AFTER U NAR U. Thankfully, I learnt that President Koroma himself said today in Freetown during the launching of 1500 wheel chairs commissioned by him for the disabled at APC HQ that Sierra Leoneans debating the AFTER UN NAR U issue are entitled to their opinions .
ALPHA AMADU JALLOH, writing at the COCORIOKO FACEBOOK FORUM , transcribed exactly what President Ernest Bai Koroma said in Krio. He wrote : “The following is a translation of what President Ernest Bai Koroma said in Krio at APC HEADQUARTERS today during the occasion of commissioning of 1,600 wheelchairs acquired by APC Disabled Wing to be distributed nationwide to the needy. The President was reacting to repeated calls for him to go for a Third Term in office. The APC Youths Secretary General, Alie Conteh spoke at the occasion, on behalf of the APC National Youth League. Alie Conteh wore a T-shirt on which was boldly emblazoned the slogan, AFTER U, NA U. Now, hear what the President had to say (translated from Krio):”Under my democratic leadership of Sierra Leone, everyone is entitled to express their opinions as long as such expression is not unlawful. I have been hearing all your opinions on the current debate, especially from the youths. You are all entitled to your personal opinions. Eventually, I will also express my personal opinion. For now, I have not personally said A SINGLE WORD so far on this matter since it started. When the right time comes, you will know my personal opinion”.
We hope the anti-democratic forces calling people names online will learn from President Koroma’s instructive statement.
We have to stop insulting people and misbehaving ourselves and let the naysayers and proponents continue to debate this issue in the national interest and in the spirit of democracy. We have to stop this despicable habit of trying to bully other people online for simply expressing their opinions. There is nothing wrong in people expressing their opinions on this issue because it will surely come up in the long run. It will be up to President Koroma to accept or reject but as a democrat he cannot stop people from debating the issue or expressing their opinions. THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE WILL ULTIMATELY PREVAIL.
MEANWHILE, the popularity of President Koroma with the people of Sierra Leone and the international community cannot be disputed. Today, the international media reported U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s second comments of the week that should demolish any notion being peddled by detractors about what the world feels about Sierra Leone and the outstanding leadership of President Ernest Koroma. In case you have not read it, we will publish it in another column in this newspaper. But speaking to the BBC, Mr. Kerry said : “The progress being made across the African continent these days is extraordinary. Africa is home to eight of the 10 fastest-growing economies in the world. ” It is unbelievable that SIERRA LEONE IS ONE OF THESE NATIONS when all some people write about their country online are gloomy and discouraging nonsense. Yes, Kerry was talking about African nations that include Sierra Leone. WE ARE ONE OF THE AFRICAN NATIONS BEING CELEBRATED AS HAVING THE FASTEST GROWING ECONOMIES IN THE WORLD. This achievement is another reason that Sierra Leoneans deserve to celebrate the leadership of their country. If people want to put them under the bushel, some of us will not get tired propagating them in the interest of the nation.
We have been providing colorful and heart-warming pictures of the magnificent road and infrastructural developments the President has been carrying out in Sierra Leone –achievements that have made him the hero of the Sierra Leonean people and the international community.
Today, we look at another reason that the nation and international stakeholders have such respect for President Koroma’s leadership. THE SECOND FASTEST GROWING ECONOMY IN THE WHOLE WORLD. For two years running, the IMF and the World Bank have adjudged Sierra Leone as having one of the fastest growing economies in the world. The importance of this achievement is reflected in U.S Secretary of State’s immense joy that 8 of the 10 nations with the fastest growing economies in the world are from Africa ( And these include Mother Sierra Leone ). Mr Kerry said joyfully : “Best of all, each day more Africans are seeing these many benefits reflected in their daily lives. I’m visiting the continent to celebrate that progress…”
We invite our readers to feast their eyes on the statistics that do not lie, once again. It is undeniably a great achievement for Sierra Leone, for President Koroma and for the APC Government. Whatever detractors say, this is another evidence that Sierra Leone is in the hands of a capable and competent government.
|Rank||Country||GDP Growth (In %)|
Source : International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database, April 2013
Map of fastest growing economies in the world, has a list of world top ten countries sorted on the basis of their gross domestic product (real) growth rate.
That out of the way, here are the 10 countries that are expected to have the most economic growth in 2014, ranked from first to last by percentage of GDP growth:GDP (real) is calculated on the basis of the value of final products and goods purchased in a given year by a nation. Inflation is taken into consideration and PPP i.e. purchasing power parity is not taken into consideration while calculating GDP (real).
All the countries listed in this top ten list have the growth rate of more that 8%. South Sudan is the world’s fastest growing economy with a growth rate of 32.059%. Second and third position is taken by Libya and Sierra Leone in the chart of the world top ten fastest growing economies of the world.
Mongolia with 14.039% growth rate in GDP (real) is on the 4th position in this list of fastest growing economies. Similarly Paraguay with 11% of growth rate is on fifth in the list. Timor-Leste with growth rate of 10% is the sixth fastest growing economy in the world followed by Iraq, Panama, The Gambia, Mozambique which complete the list of the top ten fastest growing economies countries.
(1) Mongolia, 15.3 percent
(2) Sierra Leone, 11.2 percent
(3) Turkmenistan, 9.2 percent
(4) Two-way tie: Bhutan, 8.8 percent;
Libya, 8.8 percent
(6) Three-way tie: Iraq, 8.5 percent;
Laos, 8.5 percent;
Timor-Leste, 8.5 percent
(9) Eritrea, 8.0 percent
(10) Zambia, 7.9 percent