Sierra Leone is at risk of not being accepted as a full-fledged member of the international community of nations, if Julius Maada Bio is elected president of this small West African country. The effects and trauma of a ten-year brutal civil war can still be felt across the towns and villages that took the brunt of savagery as rebels let loose their carnage by killing and maiming innocent men, women and children. Sierra Leone still bears the scars of the lunatic and erratic actions of young and inexperienced soldiers who took power by force in 1992, and went on the rampage with the summary executions of all those who dared challenge the legitimacy of their hold on to power. The opposition SLPP party is once more attempting to drag this now peaceful nation, into the abyss of destruction, violence and economic ruin, by presenting as its candidate for president in the upcoming 20112 elections, a man who is guilty of crimes against the people of this blessed country. A man whose track record as leader disqualifies him completely of ever holding any public office in our country. As a matter of fact, he does not have the democratic credentials that is necessary, and a prerequisite, to give our country the much-needed voice to negotiate itself out of the economic misery he and his colleagues dragged us into.
The mistake that was made in 1996, when Ahmed Tejan Kabbah, a convicted criminal, who during his tenure as a senior civil servant, swindled public funds, and was convicted for corruption and then banned from ever holding any public office, was presented then as the SLPP candidate, should not be replicated in the present politics of this once bread-basket of West Africa. The SLPP has wrecked our country’s economy and reduced our international standing in the world. It seems the SLPP can only offer criminals as candidates for president, as they have run out of options and the real intentions to get back into power is to continue their inept corruption, and finally confine our country into a stricken economic state. This is unacceptable and should not be allowed, as our country is now on-track to once more regain its glory and rebuild its once battered infrastructure by reviving its economy, as the government of President Ernest Bai Koroma position itself to deliver important and vital services that has been long overdue.
Julius Maada Bio took part in the overthrow of a sitting government, and then took power by force through a palace coup that saw him oust his colleague, Valentine Strasser, for reasons still not fully explained. He then assumed the leadership of a country that was left brutalised to the core with a huge economic and infrastructural deficit. It will be difficult for Sierra Leone to be taken seriously again in any world affairs or international deliberation, if the face of our country and the true representation of our people, is a man who has the blood of innocent men and women in his hands. The records are clear, and the facts apparent, that Maada Bio presided over, along with others, the cold-blooded murder of several of Sierra Leone’s most illustrious sons and daughters.
Families and loved ones across the world are still mourning and coming to terms with the slaughter of their sons, fathers, mothers, and brothers who were taken to the gallows after justice was denied to them when their crimes were only virtual, with no credence or evidence to substantiate their unwarranted convictions. The history of this wonderful country cannot be complete if what transpired then is not fully documented and the truth not revealed. The actions of a few should not be ignored as justice is important to be seen as done for these barbaric crimes committed by those who believe they were above the law, and had the right to prosecute and hand down sentences at will, without the due process of the law. Julius Maada Bio should face justice and be tried in the International Criminal Court of Justice for the heinous crimes he committed against the people of Sierra Leone.
The international criminal court is duty bound to open investigations into the conduct of the NPRC regime, then headed by Julius Maada Bio, as to the disappearance and brutal murder of hundred’s of people, some who were hanged without reason and others even reportedly tortured into making false confessions of crimes they never committed. The recent skirmishes in the provinces involving Maada Bio and his henchmen, where ruling party officials and premises were attacked and set on fire, provides a poignant reminder of what is at stake, and reveals the violent nature of a man who strongly believes that the only way to take power is by force and brutal means. Bio ordered his supporters to unleash carnage and burn down the homes of APC officials as he demonstrated his true intentions to seek power once more in Sierra Leone. The fact that he went on a political campaign tour, when official campaigning has not even started yet, is clearly provocative and with intentions to cause mayhem and chaos.
The economic crimes perpetrated by Bio and his colleagues during their stint in power, left our country gasping for aid as the coffers were emptied and what was truly ours squandered to fund a lavish lifestyle of womanizing, booze and ostentatious mansions across the US and other parts of the world. The audacity to even contemplate leadership of our country with this background, is simply ludicrous, considering what the people already know about Bio. There is no credibility in the candidacy of Julius Maada Bio as the SLPP’s political gimmick is only an insult to the people of Sierra Leone, who know truly well what they endured for over ten years in the hands of a party and a group of scoundrels who diverted public funds for personal use.
Sierra Leone has now taken the path towards rebuilding itself and repairing the damage that it has endured over the years in the hands of unscrupulous SLPP and NPRC government officials, and is indeed fortunate to have as leader a man whose vision to see our country shift from its apparent continued need for foreign aid, to a country prosperous once again and self-sufficient as it engages the rest of the world with its credibility once again intact, is ever more apparent. As a nation, we cannot afford to slip once more, and Julius Maada Bio offers us nothing and we should not look forward to another NPRC era, instead we should all be resolved to ensure justice is done for those who were murdered in cold-blood to satisfy the greed and thirst for power of a few.