• September 28, 2023

Lungi Yearns APC’s Return

Lungi Yearns APC’s Return
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By Donstance Koroma

Lungi Town is a very strategic town that has over the years contributed substantial amounts of revenue mobilisation to government’s coffers.

Since the coming of the Bio led administration in 2018, the SLPP government has fought tooth and nail to gain political dominance, yet the government finds it difficult to put its feet down to date.

Despite the extension of the airport that saw the construction of an additional terminal that stimulated the country passing the International Civil Aviation Organisation –ICAO’s safety test, the unwillingness to accept the incumbent is clearly written on the walls of this special town.With the SUMA Group of companies having already won the bid for the construction of the Lungi Bridge, coupled with a manifesto promise to further construct the country’s international conference hall of international standards, the love for the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) party by majority of the people goes beyond what words can imagine.

To many inhabitants, the current economic hardship and other odds that have characterised the Bio government are hard lessons learnt for the coming future.

Josephine Sillah, a graduate from the Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM) in a private business of cosmetics at Benkeh junction in Benkeh village, said reputable statesmen like the former President and Vice President, Dr. Ahmed Tejan Kabba and Solomon E. Berewah respectively before their demise, forewarned not to risk giving President Bio the opportunity to take over the state.

Due to the self-centredness of a few people in the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) forcefully installing Julius Maada Bio then as flagbearer and presidential candidate during the 2018 elections, gave him the opportunity to enter State House for the second time, since change was imminent, she told Forum SL.

‘I was expecting President Bio to have done all within his reach to prove his critics wrong and work towards consolidating a solid national development foundation by the former president, Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma.’

At an early stage of President Bio’s rule, she said political intimidation, looting and all around violence, ushered in what Josephine called ‘the much trumpeted New Direction Administration’.

She added: ‘In my own option, the degree of political hatred and handpicking exhibited by the government during the commissions of inquiry makes the commission to lose its national face.”Ironically, President Bio, in many of his public statements, spoke about his unwavering stance in fighting corrupt politicians in Sierra Leone.

Behold, he is also a corrupt politician with an unbeatable record of stealing the 2023 presidential elections.

And there is much about the SLPP and president Bio but let me stop and continue with my business, Josephine ended.

Mani Kadiatu Marrah is a gardener in Looking Town community, a swampy settlement at Targin Ferry community.

She grows vegetables of different varieties for sale to the community and to vegetable traders at Targin community market.

“I don’t understand what you mean by the economy, all I can tell you is the price of basic commodities are going up. I know because I also go to the market and pay for transportation. I don’t need an education to understand that,” Mani Kadiatu.

Economic hardship is the common cry of many that Forum SL interfaced with as the SLPP government widened the tribal and region divides that Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma tried during his tenure to bridge.

Ibrahim Suma, a motorbike rider plying from Targin Ferry to Old Airport Junction expressed his disappointment over the untold economic hardships rocking the nation of late.

“I am a Susu by tribe and an SLPP supporter. Before the 2018 elections some of us were hopeful that President Bio will surely turn things around.”

“After observing his governance style for the past five years, I notice that he intend ruling by silencing and side-lining the oppositions,” Ibrahim said.

In a modern democracy, Ibrahim stated, you can rule without the opposition, adding: “This is where I think the president went wrong. If I have the opportunity to speak with the president I will reiterate the pressing need to diologue with the opposition.”

Ibrahim Suma is a graduate with a diploma in computer science from the Government Technical Institute (GTI) who since he graduated has not been able to secure a job, despite long years of searching.

A Nigerian national that trades in motor spare parts at the Old Airport Junction refused to disclose his true identity, but was, however, willing to talk with Forum News SL.

I notice since I arrived in Sierra Leone in early 2000 that majority of the citizens are not conscious of their political and social rights, the Nigerian national stated.

“Your politicians are wicked; citizens have no need to suffer like this. You are too small for your riches, your problem is you rely wholeheartedly on politicians to give you information on everything, when most of the youth and adults carry android phones,” he exploded in laughter.

Many described the APC as a motherly party that thinks and feels for the ordinary man whenever they are in governance, hence the reason the government of former president Ernest Bai Koroma had subsidies for almost what a majority of the populace consumed, unlike President Bio’s government where the International Monetary Fund (IMF) conditionality prevented him from doing likewise.

The hunger and thirst for the return of the All People’s Congress (APC) by the look of things is the common cry of the majority inhabitants of Lungi.

Such an outcry, Forum SL observed, can be equated to the chorus of a song that is being recited after every verses.

Many continue to wonder what awaits President Bio’s government in the remaining years ahead with such a growing outcry for change after the just concluded controversial second term victory that many international and regional quarters believe is an illegitimate regime in charge of government.

Whether president Bio stole the 2023 presidential results or whether the main opposition, regional and international bodies are levying false allegation on President Bio and the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL), time will definitely tell.

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