''All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing'' - Edmund Burke


S I E R R A  H E R A L D

Vol 10 No 1

The tendency sometimes to protect perpetrators for the sake of peace...doesn't help society. Impunity should not be allowed to stand. - Kofi Annan on Waki report

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Monday April 29, 2013 - Twenty one years ago today, a historic, earth-shaking and well nigh impossible event occurred in Sierra Leone. On April 29, 1992, the corrupt, murderous and intolerant APC cabal was overthrown by the same men who could only get into the national army after rigorous vetting by APC party top brass, concubines and all those in positions of APC trust.The man who announced the overthrow of the intolerant and undemocratic APC ending 24 years of autocratic rule, the one and only Captain Valentine Strasser.Celebrations after the 1992 overthrow of the APC in power for 24 years.

Today April 29 will always be remembered by those who suffered under and survived the jackboots of the APC as well as by those APC minority who knew that what was going on was undemocratic, unconstitutional and anti people but dare not make their voices heard lest they face the same fate as those who dared. Dr Mohamed Sorie Forna, Bank Governor Samuel Lansana Bangura and former Force Commander David Lansana as well as the main threat to the APC in the Freetown East three constituency one Mr Thompson. Then are are others in the "military division" that included the likes of Brigadier John Amadu Bangura, Conrad Iniss, Captain Jawara, Kolugbonda and the Kaikais including police officer Gabriel Tennyson Kaikai...the list goes on and on.

And so when on the evening of that historic Wednesday April 29, 1992 residents of the capital heard the voice of one Captain Valentine Strasser finally announcing the end of 24 years of APC rule, it was a time of wild celebrations first in the capital Freetown and then throughout the country as word spread that the ogre called the APC had been finally overthrown. Overthrown, kicked out of office in a move that was applauded by many freedom-loving Sierra Leoneans who praised the young men from the war front for their bold and patriotic move knowing that had they failed their mutilated and acid-drenched bodies would never have been given to their relations for burial.

Those who witnessed those executions at Pademba Road prison say it was a night long party with the Director of Prisons and the Social Welfare minister as Chief hosts. Wine and food flowed freely with unlimited accounts in the possession of the hosts who made sure that the most hated of those to be executed were given special treatment before they were led to the gallows broken, humiliated and the will to live long gone.

Twenty one years later, the APC has refused to learn from the lessons of the past and would just love to plunge the country into another conflagration using any and all means necessary - including tinkering with the Constitution to end the two-term limit. We watch with keen interest the antics of the smoke and mirrors occupant of State House as we remind him and his entourage in the greed-laden and thieving cabal that passes for a government that there will be a day of reckoning. The main line of thinking now at State House is that they had indeed learnt lessons - how to hide away stolen funds in off-shore bank accounts as well as investing in the new playground of the nouveau riche Abu Dhabi and that before things get to pre-April 1992, they would have left the scene to gorge on funds stolen from the people.

For those wishing to rewrite the pages of history and hence attempting to deliberately distort the true story of life under the 24 year excesses of the All Peoples Congress, APC party, we would advise that they visit the Government Bookshop and obtain copies of proceedings of the Commissions of Inquiry set up by the NPRC after the thieving, intolerant, divisive and unrepentant APC were kicked out of office.

The Mrs Justice Laura Marcus-Jones Commission of Inquiry investigated and reported on the assets, activities and other related matters of the Public Officers, Members of the Board and Employees of Parastatals, Ministers of State, Paramount Chiefs; and on Contractors - within the period 1st day of June, 1986 to the 22nd day of September, 1991.

The Justice Lynton Nylander Commission of Inquiry investigated and reported on the financial activities of Parastatals, Departments and Corporations.

The Beccles Davies Commission of Inquiry investigated and reported on the assets and other related matters of all persons who were Presidents, Vice Presidents, Ministers, Ministers of State and Deputy Ministers within the same period. The Commission was also charged with inquiring into and investigating whether such assets were acquired lawfully or unlawfully.

They would also do well to ask the survivors - both APC overlords and suffering Sierra Leoneans who were subjected to all manner and forms of human rights abuses including the setting up of Information Agents paid from the coffers of the state and whose duty was to report to State House and other handlers on what individuals were saying/talking about the atmosphere of fear and tribulation that had been put in place by APC operatives.

These Information Agents, when faced with the prospect of having nothing to report on about other people they would want punished, invented any and all manner of lies that would be pleasing to their masters including the head of the police force who also had his team of paid informants reporting directly to him and no other person.

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©Sierra Herald 2002