• August 21, 2023


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It is a character flaw of his that continues to evoke distrust and discomfort in the people whenever they see or interact with the All People’s Congress – APC leader and flagbearer, Dr Samura Mathew Wilson Kamara. They say they don’t see the kind of seriousness and presence in the public space they expected from Dr Samura Kamara in light of his and the APC’s campaign of boycotting participating in government or making the state difficult to govern. Many have even stated that Dr Samura Kamara is not up to the task.

‘Seriously, Dr Kamara is too quiet. As a matter of fact the whole opposition APC party is too quiet. Dr Kamara is not vexed enough with what is going on. Voters are bewildered by the kind of lacklustre response from the APC party. Many remain hopeful but many more have resolved to believe that Dr Samura Kamara has accepted the results as he did for the 2018 results. Sadly many people looked up to Dr Kamara as a change maker, a developmental economist that was going to make things better for the country,’ a member of the diplomatic corps observed. She said Dr Kamara should be open to dialogue and strongly stands his party’s grounds with demands for the June 24 presidential results, the release of all APC members and supporters in detention, the security sector should be publically accountability and take full responsibility of all killings prior, during and even after the elections, to end the culture of impunity. ‘However, dialogue should not involve not speaking the truth. It must be stated that in no way does dialogue implies that the APC has accepted Bio as the winner of the presidential elections. The EU, UK, US, even locals expected for Dr Samura Kamara to be as proactive as Bio was before, during and after the 2018 vote, when he vowed to make the state ungovernable if he did not win,’ they confessed.

In meetings with Dr Samura Kamara, diplomats accused him of smiling and acting as if the presidency will be handed over to him on a silver platter. They see Bio on the other hand working hard for his victories, no matter how they came about. They don’t see Dr Samura Kamara doing the same or even going further.

‘The APC cannot give up on this course. If they do, then where does that leave those who are in detention or have been in detention since 10 August 2022 to date and before? How about those who were killed by the state since 2018? How about those on the run, in hiding or exiled by fear? We are beginning to feel as if our hope in either Dr Samura Kamara or the international community to help Sierra Leoneans resolve this election issue is misplaced,’ said his supporters.

The “quiet APC” approach is making supporters worried that ‘we will sit and watch Bio go another five years’, which would have reversed the nation to a one-party state. The APC must not be cowed from speaking out in fear of being arrested along the wave of arrests of alleged coup plotters wanting to use protest action over the announced presidential elections result to destabilise the state.

‘We see this move as a ploy to divert our attention from this illegal and treasonous regime by claiming that certain soldiers and former police officers and others on the run were allegedly planning to overthrow Bio as a ruse. It is a deception tactics, even the move by certain media regulators being weaponized to stifle media freedom all in the name of urging newspapers to refrain from anything critical of how the president ‘won’ his election. This should not stop the APC’s decision to stay out of government. This should make Dr Samura Kamara bolder. We are all expected to subscribe to the mass amnesia that Bio ‘won’ the elections fairly and for the sake of peace and national cohesion to accept this daylight robbery of the people’s mandate. The APC must never be pushed into a corner with this dialogue by allowing Bio to convince them that people want to remove him from power. But we are still waiting to see action from Dr Samura Kamara,’ said an APC supporter.

This quiet approach as exhibited by Dr Samura Kamara is part of the cause for military interventions across West Africa. By being rendered impotent by fear of the power wielded by the executive in the presence of the police and armed forces, opposition parties from Mali to Guinea to Niger were made ineffective in countering the actions of the executive who leaned heavily on the electoral managers of the country’s elections to do his bidding. The military was the last hope the oppressed people have for restoring sanity to the constituted order.

‘We see closer to home incumbent regimes doing all they can to entrench their grip on power. We see in Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal presidents who changed the constitution to give them further mandates and the other attempting to do the same but was resisted by the people, who were killed on numbers for protesting against Mackey Sall, with opposition figures jailed and disqualified from contesting against him. We cannot sit by and watch Bio do likewise here in Sierra Leone. We see all his moves with questionably elections credibility and now claiming that people want to overthrow him as excuses to seek further mandates to stop “the terrorists”, the name he gave to those that were killed by his security forces for wanting to protest against their living condition that culminated to the August 10 protest heard around the world. This will be his justification for staying in power,’ we were informed.

Dr Samura Kamara and the APC at this critical juncture in our democracy have a lot to do to change our elections narratives for the better. Any change to the constituted order must be done in the interest of the people, not to benefit an individual or the political elites with delusions of grandeur.

If Dr Samura Kamara and the APC and all our supporters locally and internationally allow for Bio’s charade to continue, then we should always be prepared for a disagreement every five year election cycle when the incumbent would have refused to accept defeat and start to behave just as Bio and the Chief Electoral Commissioner are doing.

‘The people are looking forward to Dr Samura Kamara to buck this trend and set the nation on the right democratic trajectory. His desire to restore and safeguard our democracy, social justice and national unity rests on him being aggressive that this presidential election result will not stand and that Bio should be getting ready to step aside from State House and allow a re-run the polls, with possible criminal charges against Konneh for his singlehanded role in destabilising the state. If Dr Samura Kamara is not up to the task, Bio, Konneh and the international community will never take him serious. His quiet approach by not being regularly on media engagement on the challenging issue is why Bio is so bold to have preceded with government of the South-East. Any talk of dialogue must be time for us to make demands of this government not for them to dictate terms. They are not standing on any moral or ethical foundation to dictate,’ the citizens demanded.

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