• September 15, 2023

“WE CAN’T SUPPORT AN ILLEGAL REGIME” – Protesting businesspeople *spectral organisers claim protest was a success

“WE CAN’T SUPPORT AN ILLEGAL REGIME” – Protesting businesspeople  *spectral organisers claim protest was a success
Share on

The organisers of Monday’ stay home protest actions have claimed success, adding that their plan to show the ruling party government who the real government of Sierra Leone is has worked.

They say Sierra Leone is presently an unattractive business and investment environment, urging that businesses that want to realise solid profits without being burdened by a tax regime that is not favourably disposed to ensuring that their businesses’ succeed should not waste their time and effort by investing in Sierra Leone.

The organisers say they cannot continue to pay taxes to maintain ‘an illegal regime’ they claim is occupying State House without their consent. By their stay home protest action the day’s organisers say they are not only stifling government’s plans to continue despite widespread consistent calls for them to desist, but they are also ensuring that their supporters are not killed on the streets by trigger happy officers who had been ordered to shoot on sight any protesting civilians.

They said their main plan was to avoid any situation that would look like a repeat of the 10 August 2022 protest action heard around the world for the loss of lives and destruction to public and private properties.

On the contrary those that are against the protest have said it did not produce the desired result, going as far as saying that the general public felt it more than the ruling party government.

In response to a comment by the president’s press secretary Solomon Jamiru over Radio Democracy on Monday, September 11, 2023 that it is the people that will suffer and not government from the effects of the protest action, some members of the traders union have also clarified that ‘we the people form the government of Sierra Leone hence by right it is us who are suffering, not SLPP or APC, but all Sierra Leone’.

The group of mainly women traders said they cannot continue to support ‘an elections rigging regime by paying taxes to prop it up’.

Knowing that the government is financially challenged by the recent sackings taking place and the fact that the government struggled to pay wages end of August they said closing their shops and staying home also go a long way in adding to the government’s worries.

All this is being done to force the government to see reason to take the people’s demands that they are not pleased with the announced presidential elections result seriously and to do the needful as is being demanded by the main opposition and all well-meaning organisations and nations.

Although the stay home protest by many traders also disrupted much of the day’s other activities including schools, banks, hospitals and other businesses, the organisers say they are prepared to stay the course, announcing that the government should be expecting more such protest actions going forward until the second phase of their protest action that will result from government failing to do the needful.

The day’s organisers say they planned the action to state their displeasure with the current state of affairs in the country with the difficulties that the whole nation is currently experiencing that they blamed on the actions taken by our moral guarantors over our disputed elections results. Less than three months into president Bio’s disputed second term administration we are experiencing rises to the prices of goods and services that if allowed to continue for another three months could spell the beginning of the end for our economy and peace and security. The organisers of the protest action say they cannot imagine what the country would look like if president Bio is allowed to continue as president until 2028.

Meanwhile, speaking against the day, some segment of the public say yesterday’s action was a waste of time as it did not produce the desired result, going as far as saying only the public ended up suffering.

They said the action affected those that the organisers are claiming to advocate on behalf of. While there was no public transport for some time, those against the day say government officials were able to get around freely as they can afford petrol and have private vehicles, unlike a vast majority of the public.

Also speaking against the day, the public relations officer of the traders’ union called on members to come out and do business saying they are not part of the decision for traders to stay home away from their businesses.

Meanwhile, the day’s organisers are claiming success saying that the protest action was adhered to across the country, a fact that was clarified by television and other news reporters that sent or relayed news from the provinces to their home stations in Freetown. Despite the day being a stay home protest, some youth from the east of the city attempted to demonstrate, which action was called off due to the intervention of respected neighbourhood personalities, not the actions of state security personnel.

The ‘faceless’ and ‘nameless’ organisers of the protest action say the event was successful because it was not a partisan response to our present and protracted political stalemate. Sierra Leoneans from across the country representing all the political parties and tribes are all complaining that we are suffering as a nation, not as a people belonging to any political or tribal group.

The ‘spectral organisers’ of yesterday’s stay home protest action have said their action disrupted government’s tax collection activities across the country, which they believe has put a dent in their revenue mobilisation effort in light of the sanctions being imposed on government for ‘rigging the elections’.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *