Sierra Leoneans anxiously following Guinea’s tense elections with mixed motives


Sierra Leoneans are keenly following the tense elections in Guinea with mixed emotions, ollowing President Alpha Conde’s accusation of unwarranted interference into his country’s internal affairs by the Sierra Leone Vice-President Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh.

In view of the allegations by President Conde, Sierra Leoneans are worried about what the future beholds of Guinean-Sierra Leone fraternal relations should Conde win the elections.

A country where Fulas are now the third largest ethnic group , Sierra Leoneans are anxious to see whether opposition leader , Cellou Diallo, would win and become the first ethnic Fula ever to rule neighbouring Guinea., and if so, what bearing it will have on our country, given that the SLPP Government in Sierra Leone, being very unpopular, seems to have pitched tent already with the fulas. To show that African politics is now ethically-propelled , fulas in Sierra Leoneans are all over social media touting a Cellou Diallo victory. But what if Cellou Diallo does not win and Professor Conde returns to power ? What will be his relationship with Sierra Leone ?

Many Sierra Leoneans are also concerned that it might not augur well for democracy in Africa , should Conde win and achieve his much-criticized dream of gaining a third term, which was contrary to the mandated constitutional two-terms. Supporters once broached the idea of pushing former President Ernest Koroma to seek a third term after his constitutionally-mandated two terms, but the idea provoked a firestorm of protests in the nation. If Sierra Leoneans are opposed to third terms, what will be their attitude to President Conde, if he wins ?

President Conde , however, had been a good friend of Sierra Leone’s, following his personal fraternal relations with former President Ernest Bai Koroma and also has strong following in Sierra Leone from his Madingo/ Susu compatriots. The fact that ethnic groups of Guinea also exist in Sierra Leone, when politics takes an ethnic colour, passions definitely spill across borders into the neighbouring country.

Whoever wins the elections will therefore influence the direction of relations between the two West African nations in an intense tribally-motivated friendly or unfriendly direction, unless something is done to quell it in a geopolitical arena that is now polarized by ethnic politics.

This would not have happened if this SLPP Government had not poked its nose into the internal affairs of Guinea.

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