Published on August 26, 2010 by Cocorioko News · No Comments
Written by Sheik Sesay , Publisher of the EXCLUSIVE Newspaper :
Those who have been accusing President Ernest Bai Koroma of regionalism are failing to look at the wider picture of his Presidency, actions, and commitment towards opening up the entire country irrespective of those regions that did not vote for him during the 2007 Presidential elections.
President Ernest Bai Koroma through his actions has proved to be a true believer in the phrase: One People, One Country. Despite what his critic might be tagging him as running “Wusum Stars” as a government, the President has been taking development projects everywhere, even to the strongholds of the opposition parties. Recently, the Head of State was in the eastern city of Kenema where he launched the Smallholders Commercial Programme (SCP), which is a nationwide initiative aimed at increasing the productivity of the agricultural sector in the entire country. The significance of launching this programme in the opposition stronghold is that if the President does not believe that Sierra Leone is one country with one people, he would have launched it in one of the strongholds of his own party.
Contrary to what some of his bitterest critics are accusing him of regionalism, President Ernest Bai Koroma is a man who strongly believes in unity. That is more the reason why he has been engaging in road constructions to link every part of the country so that Sierra Leoneans from every region will be linked and get the feeling that they are living in one country and that they are one people.
The President does not believe in divisive politics that is why even when, during the 2007 campaign, he was ambushed by the people of Segbwema he never bear any grudge against them. When he took over power from those who those at Segbwema were supporting, he did not only go there and visit them but used the opportunity to announce that his government is very much committed to reconstruct the Kailahun-Kenema road, which has been left in a very bad shape by the President’s predecessors. This just shows that the President is a forgiving man and believes in letting bygones be bygones. Had he been very malicious, he would have nursed grudges for the people of Segbwema and Kailahun and leave them to rot.
Also some of the President’s policies and personal interactions with members of the opposition show that he believes in the policy of one country, one people. When the leader of the Minority Party in parliament fell sick, despite he is from the main opposition party, President Ernest Bai Koroma did not say he would not give him helping hand because the man does not belong to his party or the region where he comes from. He tried all he can to make the Honourable Momoh Pujeh regain his health, which the Honourable was so grateful for that he damned some of his party members and showered praises on the Head of State for coming to his rescue at a time when he was at the point of death. When former Vice President Solomon Berewa fell seriously ill and needed to be flown overseas for prompt medical attention, it was the personal intervention of President Koroma that saved the situation and very soon the ex-VP will be home hale and healthy. Despite some people are now arguing that Solomon Berewa is entitled to some benefits because he was a former Vice President. My point is that even if he is entitled to those benefits, if the President had wanted to block them he would have done so by putting a lot of bottlenecks on the way and waited until the former VP had died before the funds are released. The President’s help to both the Minority Leader and former SLPP presidential candidate shows that he strongly believes that he is the father of the nation who should render help to all his children irrespective of political party affiliation.
When the issue of appointing members to the committee that will be responsible for organising the country’s 50th year anniversary, the President did not fill the committee with only members from his party, he appointed people from diverse political backgrounds. That is why in this committee, there are strong SLPP people like the former High Commissioner to Ghana , His Excellency Alie Bangura, and former Information Minister in the past SLPP government in the person of Dr Julius Spencer. What this tells you is that the President believes that Sierra Leone is one country with one people and that anything concerning the country should involve everyone.
True to his belief in the oneness of Sierra Leone , President Ernest Bai Koroma does not discriminate. He has good rapport with some of the ardent critics from the SLPP. Before now, some of his friends were people like the current SLPP chairman John Oponjo Benjamin, and the current SLPP National Secretary General, Jacob Jusu Saffa aka JJ Blood. Even the chairman of the Kailahun District Council, Tom Nyuma, has personal rapport with the President. What this tells you? It tells you that the President has friends within the SLPP. So if the President has friends in the main opposition, does that not mean he believes that Sierra Leone is one country with one people?
As I have been writing in support of the President’s Agenda for Change, I am now asking Sierra Leoneans to give Ernest Bai Koroma a chance for a second term for him to complete the things he has started which will be of benefit to all Sierra Leoneans because we are one country, and one people. From what I have stated above, President Ernest Bai Koroma believes in the philosophy of one country, one people so much so that he is reconstructing the roads, improving on the Bumbuna hydro project; improving on his Tractorization policy so that agriculture will improve in the entire country; improving on his free health care service delivery for pregnant women, lactating mothers and Under Five children, and other items on his Agenda for Change.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 24 August 2010 )