''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 9 No 7

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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Wednesday November 2, 2011 - The paws of sobels betrayed during attacks on opposition headquarters in Freetown in March 2009.


Quite a good number of video clips have been posted on the internet in relation to the violence that was visited upon the headquarters of the main opposition Sierra Leone People's Party, SLPP headquarters in March 2009 following the "unveiling" of a "refurbished" clock tower from its beautiful stone works to a white tile-covered horror.

The video clips have shown fires burning within the SLPP compound, of people attacking the SLPP offices with stones, of arrests made of SLPP supporters and more crucially of the police apparently standing idly by and allowing supporters of the ruling APC of President Ernest Bai Koroma having a field day.

All sad, very very sad but...at least the world was able to see the evidence as captured on video and still pictures.This picture says a lot and we say many thanks to the online publication that published it.

Well - among the many pictures posted on the internet was one sent to us apparently pinched from one of the online publications based in Freetown. We express our profound gratitude for this picture to the person who originally captured it.

We are quite certain the camera person did not realise what a gem he/she had captured.

For those who were unfortunate to be caught up in our troubles, the writing on that white wall, no doubt using black paint is the same kind of scrawl you would find in areas "liberated" by sobels (soldiers serving the country to fight against the rebels of Foday Sankoh of the RUF but who never think twice of using the same logistics and supplies to attack the civilians they were deployed to protect).

That scrawl says it all - that during the attack on the SLPP headquarters, sobel elements were deployed to wreak maximum damage and great harm to the headquarters of the oppositions as well as their supporters.

We see this as a part of a bigger problem.

That the APC operations machinery must know about and have in reserve sobel elements that it intends to use to intimidate and cower any form of opposition.

We saw similar paint marks (scrawls) in "liberated areas" such as Kono, Tongo, Mile 38 and Segbwema during the war and we fear - this is not good for our new-found democracy for we believed that the hands that effected those messages had long ago become pacified but to see them rear their heads or show their hands in such a fashion speaks volumes of the threat of extreme violence that still pervades the land that we love, our very own Sierra Leone.

These messages were usually written by those in the sobel groups who claim to be educated - men like "Gbampor" who would amaze his colleagues of his claim to being an educated "soja".

Kindly look at the APC HOUSE scrawl - This was written on the wall surrounding the SLPP headquarters because this was what they had been told by their handlers - that in the long run they would seize and take control of the headquarters of the opposition and hence that building becoming APC HOUSE.!!!

This scrawl on the walls of the SLPP was, for us, the most ominous sign that all is not well in the mother country and that if every step is not taken to forestall what has been planned, we would be plunged into another round of extreme violence.

Our message is to all peace-loving Sierra Leoneans who did not see any message in that scrawl...as well as to the guarantors of our fledgling democracy and peace - we have to guard against the wiles of the power-hungry and do all we can to deter them.

Failing to do this - would be failing generations now and yet to come.


Yearning for the mother country?

The right choice is Kevin McPhilips Travel

©Sierra Herald 2002