Titus Boye-Thompson, Communications Expert
There is only one qualification one must possess to become President of the Republic of Sierra Leone and that qualification is that the person must be a citizen. Dr Samura Mathew Wilson Kamara qualifies, plain and simple. Every other accolade, awards and attachments are secondary and in fact disregarded as to qualifying criteria for such high office. The essence of that qualification should be the locus upon which any assessment of Dr Samura Kamara’s candidacy is attested or otherwise validated.
After a period of perfunctory silliness in the opposition press and social media, many now remain dumbfounded that their worse fears have been proved to be true. Yes, Dr Samura Kamara was admitted to the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Economics, his thesis accepted as contributing to the body of knowledge and by all accounts, such a tome has even been recently updated to reflect contemporary viewpoints or otherwise assess the ramifications of certain strategic decisions that have impacted on the subject matter over the years. To say nothing but the truth, no one could have done any better to unveil the intricacies of monetary union in West Africa more profusely than Dr Samura Kamara had done in 1986. His experiences since that time can no doubt attest to a conflagration of sovereignty issues, the irascible nature of poverty and its implications for cross border and cross boundary trade relationships and over all, the permutations of war, conflict and state fragility and its implications for monetary union in the sub-region. For those who are intimate with the subject matter, the context of Dr Samura Kamara’s thesis creates a broader understanding of the deepness of thought of a man who has allowed himself to be used as fodder for the development of his country and his rehion of ancestry.
Truth be told, others in his shoes turned down the offers to return to these places at times of uncertainty and an environment of such state fragility when the essence of law and order were at the very risk of being taken over by the threat and actual use of force and violence. It would be prudent to consider now, given what is known by the man, whether Dr Samura Kamara was appointed or indeed sought appointment from the NPRC. From investigations, it is becoming clear that Dr Samura Kamara was head hunted from the Commonwealth Secretariat to return to Sierra Leone and lend some credence to the efforts at stabilizing the economy at a time when those handling the ship of State had done so under the barrel of a gun. No one in their right mind wanted to support a rogue regime and a system of government that was inimical to financial probity and accountability. As a man proven to have a compassionate administrator and of sound and robust public probity, Dr Samura Kamara was asked to be seconded to Sierra Leone so that the Financial Institutions of Bretton Woods and the Washington Consensus would pinpoint him as a safe pair of hands to account for the massive restructuring support that Sierra Leone so badly needed at the time. His sound financial management and prudence in handling the international flow of capital resources was followed on by a plea by the government of Alhaji Ahmad Tejan Kabba for him to stay on. No doubt, his performance was a sterling one and he continued to build his credibility with the world financial community.
For those who continue to query the qualifications and educational background of Dr Samura Mathew Wilson Kamara, it is evident that many do not have any idea of what the man stands for and the humility of his persona. The simplicity with which he carries himself makes for a denial of anything that would bring undue embarrassment to him or his family. Many attribute Samura Kamara’s astute mind and his very fine mannerisms to his being so embroiled in the customs and traditions of Freemasonry, a brotherhood that prides itself on making good men better and inculcate the essence of good character, uprightness and charity as virtues to which it supports all its members to practice. The same ignorance that creates a shameless vilification of the man as a freemason is that which propels others to doubt the character of such a fine gentleman. Those who know him would tell of his sacrifices that he makes to his people, his family and his acquaintances. Dr Samura Kamara is most often quoted as saying that he “finds pleasure always in the company of like-minded folks who share the commonality of their goals to do good to their community and to be men of upright stature and value.” The truth is that on his being a Freemason, Dr Samura Kamara has never made any secret of the fact that he is proud to belong and in his own inimitable way, has been at the forefront of taking the craft to the parts of the Country so as to bring more good men under its fine teachings.
There are those who have been brave to venture that the protagonists against the person of Dr Saura Kamara could well be found from within the All Peoples Congress. Many would seek to point fingers at those who may have been disappointed at his choice but it is clear that for those who would contemplate such acts of treachery, their attributes as true Party men would be put under strict scrutiny. While it is feasible that traitors could well have nurtured the idea of a Samura unveiling, the abrupt nature of these sentiments point to a conspiracy against the Party even much less against the person of Dr Samura Kamara. In the event, the opposing nature of the claims against the character of the man creates the space for those who would fail to ever come to terms with his candidature to come clean and adopt such a contrary stance. What is now ever more present is the need to walk away from a discussion of the man or to turn attention from any campaign of calumny but to focus on the real issues and the potential that the Samura / Bah ticket portends. In these two we have a winning team, a pair of dedicated and well intentioned gentlemen and to all intents and purposes, two people who now must demonstrate that they can deliver the good intentions of the APC Chairman and Leader to continuing with the enduring legacy that he has started to lay the foundations of for the APC. The challenge is to endorse this candidature as the option for progress and the fundamental basis for an APC victory come 2018. It is good that the Opposition were the first to raise the issue of his nonentity, which has now given rise to the slogan of getting to know the man behind the name and the moment. Yes, we know him. We know him for his many good attributes but altogether, it is clear that he stands out as against the other man, who has blood on his hands, has stolen the wealth of this country within a very short time, sold our passports to rich Chinese and pocketed the money in his offshore accounts. Yes, we know Dr Samura Mathew Wilson Kamara to have worked under three political dispensations including Military regimes but in all this time, has worked diligently and compassionately for the good of this country. He is not like the other man who has not worked for the last twenty years and has nothing to show for his time ensconced in the University of Bradford.