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Archive for February, 2012

If SLPP Presidential candidate and 2 ambassadors who served Kabbah Government were also accredited , was there need for all the noise over UDM Leader ?

Friday, February 24th, 2012

Posted by  on February 24, 2012

Many supporters of the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) Government called COCORIOKO this evening to express delight and relief at the exclusive interview granted this paper by the Minister of Information and Communications , Alhaji I.B. Kargbo, which exonerated the government from opposition-inspired suspicions  in the matter involving the attendance of the 66th Session of the United Nations General Assembly by the Leader of the United Democratic Movement ( UDM ), Mr. Mohamed Bangura.

SLPP PRESIDENTIAL HOPEFUL ISHMAEL SENGU KOROMA WAS ALSO ACCREDITED TO ENTER THE UN

 

Whatever insinuations the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP ) had intended to establish over the incident evaporated after Hon. Kargbo revealed that it was the Permanent Mission of Sierra Leone to the United Nations  that requests accreditation for Sierra Leoneans who want to enter the UN  to hear their President address the UN General Assembly and that the courtesy is extended to all Sierra Leoneans, irrespective of their political affiliations. The Minister further revealed that as a matter of fact it was not only the UDM Leader who was accredited to attend the General Assembly but the SLPP Presidential flagbearer hopeful , Major Ishmael Songu Koroma and two ambassadors who served under the SLPP Government  in the persons of Drs. James Jonah and Sylvester Rowe.

DR. JONAH : HE TOO WAS ACCREDITED

 

These salient facts rubbished the false impressions the opposition tried to create that the Government engaged in wrongdoing when the Mission applied for accreditation for the UDM Leader to attend the UNGA . The SLPP hitherto did not know that the same courtesy had been extended to their top man, Major Koroma and two ambassadors who served their government. The SLPP  were also made to know that during their reign, their then government used to do the same thing and as a matter of fact again, the very Information Minister , while he was President of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists ( SLAJ ), was included as part of the SLPP Government delegation just to enable him to enter the UN and listen to the then President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah address the UN General Assembly.

The Minister also said that the designation of the title of Foreign Affairs Adviser to Mr. Bangura  must have been an administrative error by the person who requested the accreditation for him, the Head of Chancery and that the Government had no hand in it as  it does not determine or dictate to the Mission the titles given to Sierra Leonean officials on whose behalf accreditation is sought.

It is hoped that the Minister’s clarification will bring the matter to rest . There was no need for all the suspicions really and the valuable waste of time over non-issues that do not contribute to the socio-economic and political development of the country. Our focus as a people should be on matters of national development  which we direly need in Sierra Leone to catch pace with other African nations who are surging ahead. Unnecessarily dwelling on non-issues to score political points only help to stifle national endeavour and put the brakes on nation-building and national development.

The Government has made it very clear that it had nothing to do with the recall of the UN Representative, Mr. Michael Von Schulenburg and that it has no power to control the utterance or actions of leaders of opposition political parties .Whatever Mr. Bangura did when he was in New York , like presenting a letter of complaint against Mr. Schulenburg to UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, was at his own behest and the Government had nothing to do with it.

It is hoped that we will all heed the Minister’s appeal to move on to better things like the socio-economic and political development of our country. Our priority is national development and future generations and posterity will hold our generation guilty if we fail to deliver socio-economic and political development that would help to provide better lives for them.

 

Maada cleared to enter U.S ? Another SLPP lie, as U.S. Ambassador’s words taken out of context

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Maada cleared to enter U.S ? Another SLPP lie, as U.S. Ambassador’s words taken out of context

Filed under: Breaking News,Diaspora,Headlines |

By Solomon Sesay of The New Daily Nation :

The opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP )  newspapers have been caught in another lie. The Salone Times newspaper is reporting that “The United States of America (USA) Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Michael Owen, has said that the Presidential hopeful of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) has never been prevented from entering the United States of America. ”

The Ambassador , a career diplomat, whose job it is to maintain good relations between his country, the U.S. and Sierra Leone, is under duty to make these clarifications now and again because the U.S. would never want to be seen as taking sides in the politics of a host country. If indeed Ambassador Owens was quoted right in the statement above, he acted within the demands and responsibilities of his assignment. As the U.S Ambassador in Sierra Leone, it is his duty to assure the opposition that the U.S. had not taken any position of bias or prejudice against them. But did the ambasador really say that  “the Presidential hopeful of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) has never been prevented from entering the United States of America” ? Don’t bank on it. Words may have been put in his mouth, SLPP  newspapers-style ! ! !

MAADA BIO : HE WAS DEPORTED FROM THE U.S.

 

Unlike some undiplomatic diplomats representing international organizations who have no scruples about betraying their political impartiality, U.S. ambassadors are well-trained and will always leave no stone unturned to assure the host country that they are not interfering in the internal affairs of countries. Therefore, the ambassador’s alleged statement that is being taken out of context must have been given within the context of diplomatic protocol, if at all he said them .

Also, the ambassador may have made the statement within a context. The question that the ambassador was responding to must first be reported for one to understand why H.E. Mr. Michael Owens gave the answers allegedly being quoted by the SLPP  newspaper. It is very likely that the ambassador may have been asked a question insinuating that the U.S. was taking sides in the present conflict in the nation over the selection of an extrajudicial killer by the SLPP  for their presidential flagbearership. The U.S . has not denied Maada Bio a visa on the basis of his status as a presidential candidate of the SLPP.  That was probably the message the ambassador wanted to convey. This is one of the basic flaws in news-reporting by SLPP  newspapers. They deliberately distort AND fail to state the context under which statements were made. .

In any event, the ambassador’s response should not be interpreted to mean that Maada Bio has been cleared to enter the U.S. This is because according to American Immigration Law, U.S. Ambassadors do not determine who is granted a visa by the U.S. Immigration. That decision is purely at the discretion of the consular officer.This has been emphasized many times by U.S  Department of State officials .”Immigration law delegates the responsibility for issuance or refusal of visas to consular officers overseas. They have the final say on all visa cases. By regulation the U.S. Department of State has authority to review consular decisions, but this authority is limited to the interpretation of law, as contrasted to determinations of facts ” ( http://travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/denials/denials_1361.html ).

Secondly, even if Mr. Bio is cleared by the U.S.Embassy in Sierra Leone, that is no guarantee that he will enter the U.S. . The Consular Officer at the airport could deny him entry at his own discretion or based on existing laws in the country that provide cause for certain categories of  visitors to be barred entry. President OBama said last year that people who had been involved in human rights abuses in their countries would not be allowed to enter the U.S. Bio could fall foul of this law. And the Consular’s  decision cannot be questioned by any authority. It is like the U.S. Police officer. He can pull over anybody and issue him a ticket, for careless driving for instance if the person commits the offence  , and his decision cannot be questioned by any authority , not even a judge.

New Jerseyans can recall the famous case of the State Prosecutor, Mr. Nicholas Bissel in 1995 . He was speeding to a jewelry store where an armed holdup had just occured leading to the shooting death of a women. Bissel was racing to the scene, according to him, to preserve the evidence , when a common police officer pulled him over and issued him a ticket for speeding. Mr. Bissel raved about the ticket and newspapers ran interesting commentaries and readers’ letters on whether the Police officer had  acted reasonably . Bissel went to court to dispute the ticket but the judge upheld the decision of the police officer . The law works in America.

The SLPP  newspaper definitely misquoted the U.S. Ambassador when it said : “ He said that in fact Maada Bio has stayed in the United States of America for a while and was never deported to Sierra Leone “. It is very doubtful whether Ambassador Owens made this statement .With the manner that SLPP  newspapers have been deliberately misquoting people and taking their statements out of context, it is not likely that Mr. Owens told anybody that Maada Bio was not deported from the U.S.

Maada Bio applied for asylum in America but his application was denied. An Iranian businessman called Mr. Bahman, who was Bio’s business partner and whom he had duped , appeared in court the day the application was to be discussed and complained that Bio had duped him of thousands of dollars and that he is a criminal and swindler who had also left Sierra Leone with loot he siphoned from public coffers. The judge duly denied his request for an asylum. This case was decided in Fairfax,  Virginia .  We challenge Bio to deny this because we have collected a dosier on him . Bio was also involved in domestic abuse case and was  asked to leave voluntarily. He left before the expiration of the deadline. Probably, that was what the ambassador was referring to. Bio did not leave America in handcuffs  like people physically deported but he was asked to leave all the same.

It must also be emphasized that U.S. Consular officers do not  usually discuss with the public the basis for refusing people visas.

This is not to say that Bio will never be granted a visa to enter the U.S. As we have said earlier that decision is purely at the discretion of the Consular officer. READ :

 

IS A DENIAL UNDER SECTION 214(B) PERMANENT?

No. The consular officer will reconsider a case if an applicant can show further convincing evidence of ties outside the United States. Your friend, relative or student should contact the embassy or consulate to find out about reapplication procedures. Unfortunately, some applicants will not qualify for a nonimmigrant visa, regardless of how many times they reapply, until their personal, professional, and financial circumstances change considerably (http://travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/denials/denials_1361.html).

Thus, if Bio’s circumstances change and it is the opinion of the Consular Officer that he could now be given a visa, it is possible for him to be issued one. Also, according to some usually reliable U.S. Political experts , in order not to be seen as interfering in the internal affairs of Sierra Leone, Bio could be granted a visa to visit with his supporters in the U.S now that he is a presidential candidate.  But again that decision is purely at the discretion of the Consular Officer.

 

America Clears Maada Bio  

 Thomas Dixon

Salone Times – February 22 2012: The United States of America (USA) Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Michael Owen, has said that the Presidential hopeful of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) has never been prevented from entering the United States of America.

He said that in fact Maada Bio has stayed in the United States of America for a while and was never deported to Sierra Leone and dispelled the rumors that Maada Bio was denied a visa to enter America.

Michael Owen said that the US government will support anyone that wins the 2012 elections and also called for free, fair and peaceful elections in Sierra Leone.

He also mentioned the United States’ responsibility to Sierra Leone as the Embassy is always giving Scholarships to Sierra Leoneans to study in the US so that they will come and contribute to the country.

NOW, READ HOW ANOTHER SLPP NEWSPAPER HAS SLANTED FURTHER THE NEWS STORY ABOVE : WAS THE AMBASSADOR REALLY DEBUNKING LIES AGAINST MAADA BIO BY “ERNEST KOROMA’S MEDIA STOOGES ? ” YOU READ AND DECIDE—

Ernest Koroma’s Media Stooges Lies Against Julius Maada Bio debunked by  US Ambassador to Sierra Leone  

Written by New People National Correspondent

US Ambassador to SL Michael OwensUS Ambassador to SL Michael Owens

 

The desperation of President Ernest Bai Koroma’s discredited media stooges in Sierra Leone and abroad has stretched to the point of lying against the US government and US ambassador about the visa status of opposition flag bearer, Julius Bio, as a way of diverting international attention away from the catalogue lies and ICC indictable offences being committed by the president himself ahead of this year’s November polls. Here is the US Ambassador’s position on Julius Bio’s travel status to the US stated in black and white as reported in the Salone Times newspaper:

America Clears Maada Bio  

 

 

Thomas Dixon

 

Salone Times – February 22 2012: The United States of America (USA) Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Michael Owen, has said that the Presidential hopeful of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) has never been prevented from entering the United States of America.

He said that in fact Maada Bio has stayed in the United States of America for a while and was never deported to Sierra Leone and dispelled the rumors that Maada Bio was denied a visa to enter America.

Michael Owen said that the US government will support anyone that wins the 2012 elections and also called for free, fair and peaceful elections in Sierra Leone.

He also mentioned the United States’ responsibility to Sierra Leone as the Embassy is always giving Scholarships to Sierra Leoneans to study in the US so that they will come and contribute to the country.

Meanwhile the former Executive Representative of the United Nations Secretary General Michael Schulenburg (ERSG) has accused the President of Sierra Leone Ernest Bai Koroma of declaring him persona non grata. This the government of Sierra Leone has denied in a press release.

The above clarifications, among others, clearly show that media stooges of Ernest Bai Koroma are being disgracefully discredited one after the other as their cock-and-bull tales are disproved instantly by concrete evidences which their unprofessional stories lack. Other recent instances in which President Ernest Bai Koroma himself and his regime’s stooges have been proven as pathological liars are:

1. Ernest Koroma’s wicked denial about what Reuters has now proved to be his abrupt expulsion of the UN Secretary General’s Envoy, Michael Schulenburg, who has been overseeing Sierra Leone’s peace and democratization process since 2008 and has been working to prevent a relapse of the country into another dictatorship and conflict;

2. Ernest Koroma’s lie over BBC that he is a peaceful president whilst being directly involved in the encouragement of incendiaries in politics evident by his series of fire-raising actions, including recently  presiding over the burning of opposition party symbols in Port Loko;

3. Ernest Koroma’s lie over BBC to donors and diplomats that he is against political violence whilst deliberately the concerns of donors and diplomatic over his persistent failure to implement the recommendations of official enquiry reports on political violence which have occurred since he assumed office in November 2007;

4. Ernest Koroma’s regime’s denial (which has been proven as a wicked lie and deception) of being involved in facilitating the transportation of combat-ready and foreign “voters” as paid mercenaries to perpetrate violence in opposition strongholds and falsely swell ruling party votes in opposition strongholds;

5. Ernest Koroma’s lie to the public that his record will speak for him whilst openly spraying of liquid cash at road side people passed by his convoy across the country which manifests his desperation to purchase voters’ loyalty with cash in contravention of the electoral laws of Sierra Leone and the code of conducts of democratic elections globally;

6. Ernest Koroma’s lie to the public that he is an upholder of the rule of law whilst his regime’s perpetrates the politically motivated arrest and detention of political opponents on false charges whilst refusing his political prisoners bail in contravention of the Constitution of Sierra Leone, rule of the law and internationally guaranteed rights of human beings to belong freely to political parties of their choice and serve their conscience.

 

 

Sierra Leone Police call on the nation to disregard Maada Bio’s press release

Monday, February 20th, 2012

Culled from The New Vision newspaper :

The Inspector General of Police, Francis Allieu Munu, has called on the people of Sierra Leone to discard or ignore the press release issued by the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP ) about the re-arming and deployment of ex-combatants in the South and East to register. I am encouraging all Sierra Leoneans to ignore that press release and go about their normal business . “There is nothing alarming in the country as the biometric registration is going on peacefully “,Munu said last night . He emphasized that from a professional point of view there are no arms and ammunition scattered up and down the streets which he noted would have been reflected on a high crime rate .

 

INSPECTOR GENERAL FRANCIS MUNU

 

The Police Chief recalled the national consultative conference held in December last year for leaders of the registered political parties and other stakeholders which he said has formed the basis of how to police political rallies and processions.

He urged Sierra Leoneans not to castigate or stigmatize the ex-combatants considering the fact that most people are also ex-combatants given the role they played during the war with some providing information to those who executed it.

Mr. Munu stressed that anyone involved in violence will find himself behind bars before the November elections . He assured Sierra Leoneans that they will police the November elections without fear or favour , adding that they had done it before.

 

 

Maada Bio continues destabilizing Sierra Leone : Now he insults and antagonizes the Sierra Leone Police

Monday, February 20th, 2012

Filed under: Breaking News,Diaspora,Editorial,Headlines | 

There is no end to the deplorable manner the Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP) Presidential candidate Maada Bio continues to destabilize the peace in the Sierra Leone society. Since he launched his very loathsome and unpoular presidential bid based on his “Pa-O-Pa” ( it is either me or nobody else  ) philosophy , the peace and security of the land have been steadily eroded. First, the former junta leader turned his wrath on members of his own party and newspapers who opposed his bid by having his supporters brutalize them and convert the SLPP Headquarters into a den of drug-peddling and prostitution . This led to mass resignations from the party by hundreds of faithfuls who would rather cross carpet than see their party taken over by an extrajudicial killer.

maadabio-army

 CANTERKEROUS LIAR

Next, the  blood-thirsty and power-hungry former military dictator , who cannot come to the U.S. from where he was deported for allegedly beastifying his wife and chewing off her ear, divided his country’s media  with the help of  predator  and rogue international conspirators to whom  he would mortgage the country’s resources in exchange for a windfall to fund his presidential bid. He has driven a wedge in the country’s press  by buying over some  of the  unprincipled local media operatives and international stringers working for the BBC and some international news agencies through whom he has launched a vicious  propaganda war against the government, with the help of a big international diplomat from You-Know-Where . The media personnel  know that Bio is a danger to society and unfit to be president because of his violent and thuggish personality but the lure of dirty money has proved  overwhelmingly empowering  to these pseudo-journalists.

What Maada Bio did next was to inject violence in the country’s political process in what looks like a well-orchestrated plan that will see the blame ultimately shifted to the ruling government . He had brainwashed some misguided youths in the party to take the law into their hands and these destructive elements unleashed violence and mayhem in Bo and Freetown with the result that SLPP  supporters are presently on trial in the capital for offences ranging from conspiracy to break the law, malicious wounding  to  wounding with intent contrary to Section 18 of the Offences against the persons Act of 1861. Some other SLPP  supporters are on trial for kidnapping . The fact that no ruling All People’s Congress ( APC ) supporter is on trial shows who have been perpetuating violence in Sierra Leone.

To further spread fear across the nation and  destabilize  the country this time across regional lines , Maada Bio then contrived a spectacular ploy of  accusing the government falsely of transporting armed former combatants to the strongholds of the opposition SLPP in the South/East not only to register to vote but,  according to him,  to wreak violence during the elections.

These allegations caused a tremendous disquiet in the nation because they have the potential of not only driving away investors and  aid donors but sparking regional and tribal war.  It was in this vein that the Sierra Leone Police, as enforcers of the law and protectors of national peace and security politely invited Mr. Bio to their headquarters to  bring them proofs so that they would  take the appropriate action to protect the nation and bring the culprits to justice. The Police remonstrated that they took the allegations seriously and evidence provided by Bio would help them to nip the problem in the bud.

Any civilized, decent and law-abiding citizen would have accepted the Police invitation and gone to the Headquarters to provide the required evidence. After all, the Police and everybody in the nation did not expect Bio to have made  such dangerous allegations without having got the evidence. But as usual, even a laudable gesture from  law-enforcement agencies is an alibi for Bio to continue his diabolical attempts to divide the society and destabilize everything in the country.

After thumbing his nose at the Police and defying their call, Bio has now come up with a response which , unsurprisingly does not only demonstrate that he had been lying all along but is a continuation of his attempts to destabilize the country. According to the SIERRA EXPRESS  newspaper, the troubled former soldier has said : “I have documentary proofs to the effect but will not to give same to the police because on number of times the police have proved to be inefficient in the investigation of such matters.’’  WHAT A STUPID EXCUSE  FOR LYING AND NOT HAVING THE EVIDENCE ! ! ! WHAT A SHAMEFUL AND DISGRACEFUL ACT OF PLAYING ON THE MINDS AND INTELLIGENCE OF THE PEOPLE  ! ! ! !  ALSO, WHAT A CRASS DEMONSTRATION OF IRRESPONSIBILITY AND DISRESPECT FOR ONE’S OWN CREDIBILITY  ! ! ! !  If any further evidence was ever required to prove that Maada Bio is not fit for leadership, he has just provided it.

Maada Bio has not only proved that he had been lying all along and that he had no evidence to substantiate his allegations ; he is now trying to antagonize the Police so that he will be at loggerheads with them and place the blame on them when President Ernest Koroma would have defeated him at the November elections.

The government should not treat this latest Maada Bio depravity lightly. The government should go ahead with its threats to sue him for seditious libel. An example has to be set of his canterkerous  liar  and troublemaker  masquerading as a presidential candidate. Maada Bio must be made to know that the state is larger than him.  This is sedition plain and simple and Maada Bio must start seeing himself being brought to book for his crimes against this nation so that the spirit of impunity so ingrained in him will be expunged.

 

Sierra Leone Deputy Information Minister hails ‘Foreign Confidential’ Magazine for exonerating President Ernest Koroma

Monday, February 20th, 2012

Sierra Leone Deputy Information Minister hails ‘Foreign Confidential’ Magazine for exonerating President Ernest Koroma

Filed under: Breaking News,Diaspora,Headlines |

The Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Hon. Sheka Tarawalli,  has hailed the ’Foreign Confidential’   magazine for exonerating  President Ernest Bai Koroma from false accusations in the recall of Mr. Michael Von Schulenburg  by the United Nations. Since the former Executive Representative of the UN Secretary General ( ERSG ), Mr. Schulenburg,  was recalled after virtually ending his tour of duty in Sierra Leone, the opposition had been falsely accusing President Koroma of orchestrating the ERSG’s departure. The UN and the Sierra Leone Government refuted the allegations but last week, a secret letter that Mr. Schulenburg had written the UN was purposedly leaked to the Reuters News Agency by the opposition  because Mr. Schulenburg had repeated the opposition’s allegations that President Koroma had something to do with his departure.

MINISTER TARAWALLI

However, over the weekend, the highly-credible and well-respected FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL Magazine wrote authoritatively that  “a controversial United Nations official stationed in Sierra Leone appears  to have used his position to aid opposition figures ahead of national elections set for this November ..” The magazine went on to say that “Foreign Confidential™ has learned that the number of meetings that von der Schulenburg held with Bio and other opposition figures was unusually high. Informed sources in Freetown say the envoy’s anti-Government bias was well known among expats and foreign diplomats.”

Minister Tarawalli, who was in the U.S. on official duty , granted COCORIOKO an exclusive interview on the revelations by the Foreign Confidential magazine.  He  said he was relieved by the revelations made by the respected magazine because it buttressed the fact that  if Mr. Schulenburg was forced out of Sierra Leone at all it was not because of any move by the government and President Koroma , but probably because of his own misdeeds which must have forced the UN to order his recall months before his tenure was to end . He said that it was refreshing that the ‘Foreign Confidential’  Magazine made it clear that even expatriates and foreign diplomats were aware of Schulenburg’s anti-government bias.

Mr. Tarawalli taunted the opposition SLPP  for not depending on the ballot box to win elections .He said that the reason that the SLPP  engaged in clandestine relations with the ERSG, as now exposed by Foreign Confidential , is that they have no respect for the ballot box or their ability to win elections .  He said that,  on the contrary, the APC  believe in its ability to always defeat the SLPP  at the polls so the government had no reason asking the UN  to withdraw Mr.Schulenburg. The minister also condemned the SLPP for its penchant to distort stories and spread false propaganda against the APC, as was done during this Schulenburg issue.

Minister Tarawalli stated that on the basis of Mr. Schulenburg misconduct and anti-government bias which was known to foreign diplomats if President Koroma really wanted to interfere with his ‘s tenure in Sierra Leone, he would have declared him persona non grata as former President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah did to another UN Representative years back.

Mr. Tarawalli said that another important fact that has emerged is that it was not only in Sierra Leone that Mr. Schulenberg misbehaved and that he is in fact a controversial character who was not knew to controversy. The minister noted that Mr. Schulenberg’s  controversial character should make nobody take his allegations against the APC Government and President Koroma seriously. It is now known that he is only a diplomat that likes to meddle in the internal affairs of any country he has been sent.

Mr. Tarawalli told COCORIOKO  that the UN  must have withdrawn Mr. Schulenburg to save their reputation as an impartial international organization responsible for promoting international peace and security.

READ THE REPORT IN THE FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL MAGAZINE
UN Official Slams Sierra Leone Ahead of National Elections

Citizens of Recovering Country See Astonishing Action
as Meddling at Best, Regime Change Attempt at Worst
Mysterious Leak and Allegations of Bias
A controversial United Nations official stationed in Sierra Leone who appears to have used his position to aid opposition figures ahead of national elections set for this November has left the country, cutting short his stay in the West African nation by a year.
Moreover, in what may be an unprecedented action, the former envoy, Michael von der Schulenburg, asserted in a letter to UN headquarters that the organization’s credibility and Sierra Leone “success story” were threatened as a result of “unreasonable and unjustified demands” by the Sierra Leone Government for his early departure and “an effort to remove a potential obstacle [meaning himself] to … manipulating the election outcome” in favor of the incumbent President Ernest Bai Koroma.
The existence of the letter came to light after it was leaked to Reuters, which published a story about the letter on Monday. The content and style of the story–click here to read it–somewhat resembles a newsrelease rather than a news article, making Reuters look more like a public relations service than a press agency for disseminating the piece.
The leaker’s identity has not been made public as of this writing.
Both the UN and the Sierra Leone President have denied that von der Schulenburg was pushed out of his job. Click here for a relevant report.
Elections in Sierra Leone this November come a decade after the end of an 11-year civil war that left over 50,000 dead. The conflict came to an end in 2002, after a British military intervention practically supplanted a weak and ineffective UN peacekeeping mission.
Although UN troops withdrew from Sierra Leone in 2005, the world body retains a 200-person mission with a mandate to help ensure the forthcoming election is peaceful and credible. President Koroma will be challenged by an estimated 10 candidates, including his main opponent, a former military leader, BrigadierJulius Maada Bio.
No Stranger to Controversy
Foreign Confidential™ has learned that the number of meetings that von der Schulenburg held with Bio and other opposition figures was unusually high. Informed sources in Freetown say the envoy’s anti-Government bias was well known among expats and foreign diplomats.
“He [von der Schulenburg] was most undiplomatic in the way he went about backing Bio,” a source says.
Von der Schulenburg, who worked in what the UN describes as its “peacebuilding” division, is no stranger to controversy–and to controversial letter writing. In December 2000, he resigned as Director of the Division for Operations and Analysis of the UN Drug Control Program (UNDCP). In his letter of resignation he severely criticized the head of the UNDCP’s parent agency, accusing his superior of being “the worst manager,” guilty of “taking irrational decisions” and of turning the UNDCP into “an organization that has increased its international visibility while at the same time is crumbling under the weight of promises that it is unable to meet under a management style that has demoralized, intimidated and paralyzed its staff.” (Among the “promises” that upset van der Schulenberg for allegedly having had been made but not kept: a 1997 pledge to Afghanistan’s drug dealing Taliban regime for $250 million in “alternative work program” funding. Apparently, von der Schulenburg would have been happy to have seen the monsters get the money.)
The fact that the 24-page ”PERSONAL/CONFIDENTIAL” resignation letter has long been available online has fueled speculation that von der Schulenburg was responsible for leaking his Sierra Leone letter to Reuters.
More recently, von der Schulenburg has been formally accused of physically abusing a staff member; and he has been dogged by persistent rumors that during an assignment in Iran he was noticeably sympathetic to the Islamist regime–whilst inappropriately exporting Persian carpets.

Deputy Information Minister Sheka Tarawalli boosts morale of government press corps in the U.S.

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

 

 The Deputy Minister of Information and Communication , Hon. Sheka Tarawalli , last Friday held talks with the Presidential  and government Press Corps in the United States of America. The meeting ,which was meant to build more capacity and boost  the confidence of the press team, was held at the Permanent Mission of Sierra Leone to the United Nations in New York.

The minister met with the  Minister Plenipotentiary who is also  charge of Information and Public Affairs at the Mission, Mr.  Leeroy Wilfred Kabs-Kanu ,  and the Information Attaches  based at the Sierra Leone Embassy to the United States, Mr. Pasco Temple and Ms. Elizabeth Foray.  He also met with the Deputy Permanent Representative for Legal Affairs, Ambassador Osman Keh Kamara and the Acting Head of Chancery, Mrs. Victoria Sulimani. The Permanent Representative , Ambassador Shekou M. Touray was away on official duties in Freetown.

Minister Sheka Tarawalli ( Middle ) flanked by Kabs Kanu (Left ) and Pasco Temple ( Right )

Minister Tarawalli  took the opportunity to introduce Mr. Pasco Temple to  Min-plenipotentiary Kabs-  Kanu as the  new substantive Information Attache  to Washington DC. He commended the  presidential  press corps for the tremendous job they were doing to propagate the activities , achievements and programs of the ruling APC Government. He said that President Ernest Koroma was pleased with their  hard work  and  charged them to  remain focussed and continue to rebrand Sierra Leone to help attact international commerce, investments and tourism. He also admonished them to continue working cooperatively  with each other as a team and as representatives of the government  for the betterment of the nation.

The minister said as Information agents the press corps is a very important arm of the government and country  and the government placed very high premium on their work. He therefore challenged them to continue to work very hard and diligently to justify the confidence reposed in them by the President and the government.

From left : Kabs Kanu, Elizabeth Foray and Pasco Temple

In his vote of thanks , Mr. Kabs-Kanu thanked the Minister for the  meeting and said that his visit  and kind sentiments had boosted the morale  of the team and given them more determination to continue to perform  their responsibilities with diligence and efficiency . He told the Minister that the ambassadors  under whom they are assigned  are  supportive of their work .  Mr. Temple and Ms. Foray also expressed delight at the minister’s meeting with them  in Washington DC and this session at the  Sierra Leone UN Mission and described the exercise  as a huge morale-booster to them.

From left : Kabs Kanu, Minister Tarawalli, Ambassador Osman Keh Kamara and Pasco Temple

Mr. Kabs-Kanu  used the opportunity to brief the minister about  online editors and publishers of  newspapers who were also performing an excellent service for the government and the country. The minister , in acknowledging their efforts,  also expressed thanks to these journalists.

Mr. Tarawalli also  thanked ambassadors and staff for helping to facilitate the work of the presidential  and government press corps.

From left : Ambassador Keh Kamara, Victoria Sulimani, Minister Tarawalli and Kabs Kanu

Minister Tarawalli also held meetings with some U.S.  organizations in the Washington DC- Maryland -Virginia Metropolis on matters of national interest. The Deputy Minister also met with some elements of the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP ) to clear the air about a spate of false propaganda being hatched against the ruling All People’s Congress ( APC )  by dissident elements  at home and the diaspora bent on defaming the government.

He assured the groups and opposition supporters that  it was the determination of President Ernest Koroma and the government  to ensure that  the forthcoming Presidential , Legislative and local elections are free and fair and to be conducted in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility. He noted the government’s commitment to stamp out  violence and re-echoed President Koroma’s warning that whoever decides to take the law into his/her hands will be dealt with to the full extent of the law.

He rubbished the diabolical allegations by SLPP Presidential candidate , Maada Bio, that government was transporting armed ex-combatants to the South/East to  register as voters for the forthcoming elections. The minister said that the government  did not need to do that because it was very confident of being  legitimately re-elected by the people of Sierra Leone .  He described the allegations as a figment of Mr. Bio’s imagination.

Minister Tarawalli said that President Koroma was focussed on his determination to  continue executing the socio-economic and political transformation of the country in accordance with his Agenda For Change program. He enumerated the many achievements of the government since it came to power in 2007 and advised his audience not to be carried away by the distortion of reality about what was going on in Sierra Leone by those who  feel that it is by spreading false propaganda against the government that they would gain power.

The minister also interfaced with other members of the Mission, including Counselor Saidu Nallo ,  the Financial Attache, Mr. Vahfomba Barwoh, the Secretaries Mrs. Iris Max-Macarthy , Mrs. Sherene Ramashengan and Mrs. Mamie Sama and the Office Manager, Mr. Smart .

 

Another big shock for SLPP, as Wusu Boie disowns them in Karina

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

Somebody called Mohamed S. Kamara cracked a side-bursting joke while commenting on one of Solomon Sesay’s articles on the Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP ) Presidential candidate, Maada Bio.  The joke , which could be found at http://www.cocorioko.net/?p=23528   goes like this ( We published it unedited for dramatic effect ) :

“A young girl walked up to her mother saying,  “Mother i’ve found a man. The mother reply “ooh my daughter i’m proud of you can i see this lucky man?” ask the mother! Then the daughter replied “mum i hope you’ll like him because his unemployed.  “ohhh yes my daughter that will be no problem at all  ” “ok “, said the daughter,  “but also his an handicap with humP-back. ”  “oooh my daughter what ever that will make happy is fine by me” said the mother. “Thanks”,  the Daughter replied, and said “mum very lastly i must inform you that his Father is a member of the SLPP in General and Flag Bearer in particular.” The mother immediately threw herself out of their five story Building. ”

WUSU BOIE KAMARA

There is no better joke to highlight the rejection malaise that has hit the SLPP  than Mr. Kamara’s  as the SLPP  tries to rationalize the latest humiliation to embrace the party . In Karina last week, as first reported by SIERRA EXPRESS,  one of the SLPP’s presidential candidates for the 2012 elections who was cheated of victory that was handed on a silver platter to Maada Bio, Mr. Osman Wusu Boie Kamara clearly and outrightly rejected the party in public.  The very popular Wusu Boie who was said to have actually won the contest before he was cheated in  diabolical backroom wrangles is now saying that he is neither a member of the ruling All People’s Congress ( APC ) nor  the SLPP. With rumours rife that Mr. Boie would likely jump ship , this declaration by one of few people taken seriously in the SLPP  has been a massive blow to the SLPP. WE BRING YOU THE LATEST REJECTION OF THE SLPP, AS REPORTED IN THE AFRICAN YOUNG VOICES NEWSPAPER :

 

‘I’m neither APC nor SLPP’ – Usu Boie Kamara declares

 posted this in HeadlinesNewsPolitics on February 13th, 2012

Abdul Hassan Fackie

Reports reaching this paper indicate that the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) is presently in a state of shock and confusion over the declaration made by the former flagbearer aspirant, Mr. Usman Boi Kamara, that he is neither a member of the All Peoples Congress (APC) nor of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP).

An Aide to Mr. Kamara who spoke to this paper explained that on Thursday, February 9 this year Mr. Kamara and other family members including the party’s Women’s Leader, Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah, paid a visit to his home town of Karina in the North of the country where he was given a Chief’s welcome.

The Aide also explained that a meeting was convened in his honour where the people expressed their appreciation to him for his astute political activities and unblemished character.

The Aide also stated that when Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah was asked to address the gathering she asked Mr. Usman Boi Kamara to break his silence and tell the people about both his political belonging and future plans as his continued silence has given rise to a lot of speculation and controversy.

Mr. Kamara, the Aide stated, did not want to answer the question but that when the people pressed him to allay their fears he calmly told them that he belongs to neither the APC nor the SLPP but that he will tell his people very soon what his future political plans are.

The Aide concluded that upon hearing this response a profound hush fell on the gathering and the SLPP stalwarts who had gathered at the meeting left unceremoniously without waiting for the meeting to end.

As we were going to press we couldn’t get any reaction from either Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah nor from any executive member of the SLPP.

February 13th, 2012 | Tags:  | Category: HeadlinesNewsPolitics

 

 

 

 

Reports reaching this paper indicate that the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) is presently in a state of shock and confusion over the declaration made by the former flagbearer aspirant, Mr. Usman Boi Kamara, that he is neither a member of the All Peoples Congress (APC) nor of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP).

An Aide to Mr. Kamara who spoke to this paper explained that on Thursday, February 9 this year Mr. Kamara and other family members including the party’s Women’s Leader, Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah, paid a visit to his home town of Karina in the North of the country where he was given a Chief’s welcome.

The Aide also explained that a meeting was convened in his honour where the people expressed their appreciation to him for his astute political activities and unblemished character.

The Aide also stated that when Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah was asked to address the gathering she asked Mr. Usman Boi Kamara to break his silence and tell the people about both his political belonging and future plans as his continued silence has given rise to a lot of speculation and controversy.

Mr. Kamara, the Aide stated, did not want to answer the question but that when the people pressed him to allay their fears he calmly told them that he belongs to neither the APC nor the SLPP but that he will tell his people very soon what his future political plans are.

The Aide concluded that upon hearing this response a profound hush fell on the gathering and the SLPP stalwarts who had gathered at the meeting left unceremoniously without waiting for the meeting to end.

As we were going to press we couldn’t get any reaction from either Mrs. Isata Jabbie Kabbah nor from any executive member of the SLPP.

If SLPP are winning the propaganda warfare as they lie , why are they so worked up about what we write ?

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

If SLPP are winning the propaganda warfare as they lie , why are they so worked up about what we write ?

Filed under: Breaking News,Diaspora,Editorial,Headlines |

You can see that the Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP ) are not only losing the popularity and credibility contest with the ever-rising President Ernest Bai Koroma ; they are also losing the propaganda warfare. Wherever President Koroma goes, the enthusiasm with which  the surging crowds and excited Sierra Leoneans  rush to welcome and hail him send the clear message that in the Sierra Leone of today, there is yet to emerge a man that will eclipse the popularity of President Koroma in the race for the Presidency. If we did not have a blind and wrongheaded opposition, the message would have been crystal clear by now to the SLPP   that as far as elections are concerned, 2012 will be another Koroma time in Sierra Leone.

 

 

 

Another area the SLPP is losing is the propaganda war .  The revelations  by the FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL magazine alone that there was a clandestine relationship between the departed Executive Representative of the UN Secretary General (ERSG) Michael Schulenberg and the party have given victory to the All People’s Congress ( APC ) Government and its media operatives. The revelations  are so damaging that they have overshadowed all the  SLPP ‘s posturings  in the Associated Press and Reuters. All that was necessary for victory was  for the pro-government forces to establish  that Schulenberg compromised his diplomatic neutrality in Sierra Leone.  Now, every right-thinking Sierra Leonean and foreigner in our midst will know that the media was right all along to question the questionable ties between Schulenberg and the SLPP.

FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL even went further to calm all apprehensions when it said ” Informed sources in Freetown say the envoy’s anti-Government bias was well known among expats and foreign diplomats. “  This is confirmation of what COCORIOKO  has told the nation  all along –That the APC should not bother about the SLPP’s posturings to the international media.

The international community and stakeholders they are trying to impress have representatives on the ground in Sierra Leone and these representatives report to their principals in their various capitals on a regular basis. If you want to know more about your country, the best people you can rely on  for credible reports at timesare the representatives of foreign missions and stakeholders in the country. This is why during times of threatening conflicts, they have the ability to withdraw their personnel at the right moments. With their more advanced information-gathering  and satellite technology, they are able to get more reliable information about the movements of dissident forces and incidents of the escalation of chaos in all parts of the country  , for instance , than local information media or even the government.  Whenever you see the U.S or Britain , Peace Corps, World Bank  etc. withdrawing their diplomatic staff, know that serious chaos is about to set in, even though  it looks calm and peaceful presently. That lesson was well learned in Liberia in 1990. While Samuel Doe was on radio and TV daily assuring the nation that there was no cause for alarm and that the rebels had been pushed back across the borders, these foreign missions and the Peace Corps withdrew their personnel. It did not even take long before the rebel war escalated with the Charles Taylor forces moving deep into the heart of the country and overunning all of Nimba and parts of Margibi as well as Lofa and Sinoe Counties.

A very graphic and colorful proof that the SLPP propaganda has not impacted negatively on the international community is the fact that foreign donor agencies and the Britton Woods institutions continue to support the Ernest Koroma Government during elections year. Unpopular governments that have lost the goodwill of the international community and donor agencies have aid cut off during elections year . The IMF, DFID and the World Bank discontinued all aid and support to the SLPP Government just before the 2007 elections. In direct contrast, the APC is still receiving budgetary support and final assistance at elections time. This is further demonstration of the fact that President Koroma continues to enjoy the goodwill and support of the international community , donor agencies and stakeholders.

The SLPP is winning nothing,  not even the propaganda warfare. When we see opposition  online and print newspapers obsessed with papers like COCORIOKO, you know that there are jitters in the SLPP  camp. The New People Online, Unity Now and more lately the Critique Echo and the Sierra Leone View –not to mention pro-SLPP online discussion forums–now on a regular basis  gratitiously feature COCORIOKO .  Only last night, a poorly-written and incoherent article titled , “Praise-singing APC not the way forward in Sierra Leone”, which first appeared in the print edition of UNITY NOW , has now been published in the New People  and other SLPP media and the New People’s  Editor, Sheku Kallon, shamelessly posted it in the various forums on FACEBOOK.  The article is mainly a tirade against Cocorioko.  http://www.thenewpeople.com/index.php

Some of our editors and press attaches laughed last night when they read the article.  This is not just an obsession with our paper but a vindication that we are affecting the SLPP  profoundly. What we write is definitely hitting the bullseye and exposing the SLPP  to ridicule .  If people really thought that  we were nothing but sycophants and praise-singers, they would not have been so obsessed and concerned with  what we say .  When it is not Sama Banya, it is Unity Now. When it is not Unity Now, it is the  Global Times. At times,  they devote whole editions to us .  It is an undisputed fact that COCORIOKO  is a shaker and maker of public opinion in Sierra Leone.  The SLPP  can deny all they want, but there may be some element of truth in what many Sierra Leoneans have said in online forums that we are their ‘digba soweis’  or nemesis. If not, how do you explain their obsession with us ?

 

© 2012, Cocorioko International. All rights reserved. – Discuss this and other related articles on the Salone Forum

Schulenberg’s SLPP – Bio connections exposed by FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL Magazine

Friday, February 17th, 2012

 All the noise over the former Executive Representative of the UN Secretary General ( ERSG ), Mr. Michael Von Schulenberg , should end now as the FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL Magazine has now confirmed the veracity of what the United Democratic Movement ( UDM ) told the UN in its protest letter against Schulenberg , asking for his withdrawal from Sierra Leone. The credible and respectable magazine writes : ” Foreign Confidential has learned that the number of meetings that von der Schulenburg held with Bio and other opposition figures was unusually high. Informed sources in Freetown say the envoy’s anti-Government bias was well known among expats and foreign diplomats.”
The opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party ( SLPP ) has been livid about the Schulenberg issue–The recent end to his tour of duty in Sierra Leone. The opposition quickly seized the bit and raised hell, accusing the Sierra Leone Government of being the one who declared Schulenberg persona non grata. Even when the UN  denied and said they recalled Schulenberg, the SLPP  still insisted that the government had a hand in Schulenberg’s  recall. And last week,  Reuters reported that a secret letter that Schuleng wrote the UN stating that President Koroma forced his recall had been leaked to them. This again was seized upon by the opposition and its supporters and they created a hulabaloo.
But now , Schulenberg’s nature has been exposed by the FOREIGN CONFIDENTIAL  magazine. The tell-all article even says that it was Schulenberg himself who leaked out his resignation letter to Reuters. The paper goes on to narrate that Schulenberg is not a stranger to controversy.
READ THE FULL STORY BELOW :

UN Official Slams Sierra Leone Ahead of National Elections

Citizens of Recovering Country See Astonishing Action
as Meddling at Best, Regime Change Attempt at Worst
Mysterious Leak and Allegations of Bias
A controversial United Nations official stationed in Sierra Leone who appears to have used his position to aid opposition figures ahead of national elections set for this November has left the country, cutting short his stay in the West African nation by a year.
Moreover, in what may be an unprecedented action, the former envoy, Michael von der Schulenburg, asserted in a letter to UN headquarters that the organization’s credibility and Sierra Leone “success story” were threatened as a result of “unreasonable and unjustified demands” by the Sierra Leone Government for his early departure and “an effort to remove a potential obstacle [meaning himself] to … manipulating the election outcome” in favor of the incumbent President Ernest Bai Koroma.
The existence of the letter came to light after it was leaked to Reuters, which published a story about the letter on Monday. The content and style of the story–click here to read it–somewhat resembles a news release rather than a news article, making Reuters look more like a public relations service than a press agency for disseminating the piece.
The leaker’s identity has not been made public as of this writing.
Both the UN and the Sierra Leone President have denied that von der Schulenburg was pushed out of his job. Click here for a relevant report.
Elections in Sierra Leone this November come a decade after the end of an 11-year civil war that left over 50,000 dead. The conflict came to an end in 2002, after a British military intervention practically supplanted a weak and ineffective UN peacekeeping mission.
Although UN troops withdrew from Sierra Leone in 2005, the world body retains a 200-person mission with a mandate to help ensure the forthcoming election is peaceful and credible. President Koroma will be challenged by an estimated 10 candidates, including his main opponent, a former military leader, Brigadier Julius Maada Bio.
No Stranger to Controversy
Foreign Confidential™ has learned that the number of meetings that von der Schulenburg held with Bio and other opposition figures was unusually high. Informed sources in Freetown say the envoy’s anti-Government bias was well known among expats and foreign diplomats.
“He [von der Schulenburg] was most undiplomatic in the way he went about backing Bio,” a source says.
Von der Schulenburg, who worked in what the UN describes as its “peacebuilding” division, is no stranger to controversy–and to controversial letter writing. In December 2000, he resigned as Director of the Division for Operations and Analysis of the UN Drug Control Program (UNDCP). In his letter of resignation he severely criticized the head of the UNDCP’s parent agency, accusing his superior of being “the worst manager,” guilty of “taking irrational decisions” and of turning the UNDCP into “an organization that has increased its international visibility while at the same time is crumbling under the weight of promises that it is unable to meet under a management style that has demoralized, intimidated and paralyzed its staff.” (Among the “promises” that upset van der Schulenberg for allegedly having had been made but not kept: a 1997 pledge to Afghanistan’s drug dealing Taliban regime for $250 million in “alternative work program” funding. Apparently, von der Schulenburg would have been happy to have seen the monsters get the money.)
The fact that the 24-page ”PERSONAL/CONFIDENTIAL” resignation letter has long been available online has fueled speculation that von der Schulenburg was responsible for leaking his Sierra Leone letter to Reuters.
More recently, von der Schulenburg has been formally accused of physically abusing a staff member; and he has been dogged by persistent rumors that during an assignment in Iran he was noticeably sympathetic to the Islamist regime–whilst inappropriately exporting Persian carpets.

Minister says it is vote of confidence in Ernest Koroma’s Government, as World Bank and DFID provide US $34 million support

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

Photo: l-r Charge D’Affairs  ai Counselor Sheku Mesali and World Bank Acting Country Director For Sierra Leone Sergiy Kulyk signing World Bank Documents for their principals)
The World Bank and the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) have again lent their support to Sierra Leone’s unprecedented opportunity for transformation and sustained growth, by making available the sum of thirty four million United States dollars ($34M) to the President Ernest Bai Koroma-led Government.

This was made known to the Charge D’ Affairs a.i of the Republic of Sierra Leone Embassy in Washington, Counselor Sheku Mesali, on Tuesday February 14th 2012 by the World Bank’s Acting Country Director to Sierra Leone, Sergiy Kulyk, during a ceremony marking the signing of the financing grant witnessed by Sierra Leone’s Deputy Information Minister Hon. Sheka Tarawalie at the Bank’s offices at 18 H Street, NW, Washington, DC 20433 USA.

Two Documents were signed for two different supports: the first was for the sum of twenty six million United States dollars ($26M) approved by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors, and the second for eight million United States dollars ($8M) approved by both the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors and DFID’s Trust Fund Grant for four million United States dollars each.

Speaking before the signing ceremony, the Acting Country Director (SL) said the overall objective of the program is to support decentralized delivery of basic services in Sierra Leone: “ Specifically, the second phase of the project will focus on strengthening the capacity to manage decentralized services, improving availability and certainty of funding for local councils and developing the Inter–governmental fiscal transfer system.”

Sergiy Kulyk also said the eight million dollars ($8M) provided by the World Bank and DFID will go towards the development objective of building the capacity of the Government of Sierra Leone to improve on the management and regulation of the extractive industries sector.

He expressed optimism in the improvement of the economy and said there are signs for positive and expansive growth in Sierra Leone.

Ag Director Charge D’Affairs Sheku Mesali, Lawyer Christine Makori, Tawhid Nawaz Operations Advisor, Hon Sheka Shekito Tarawally, John Vandyck, and Vijay Paillai

Responding, Sierra Leone’s Charge D’Affairs ai Counselor Sheku Mesali thanked the World Bank Board of Directors and DFID for their support. He described the consistency that characterizes the support of the President Koroma-led government by these two institutions as laudable and assured the World Bank and DFID authorities that the money will be judiciously utilized.

In his comments, Deputy Minister of Information and Communications who doubles as Co-government Spokesman, Hon. Sheka (Shekito) Tarawalie, described the World Bank and DFID intervention as “a vote of confidence in the President Koroma-led government. These significant inputs from our international development partners coming even in an election year symbolize an endorsement of the excellent performance of the Sierra Leone Government”. Hon. Tarawalie also acknowledged a report titled ‘Beating-the-economic-downturn-in-Sierra-Leone-with-reforms’ authored by World Bank Country Manager Vijay Pillai on the World Bank blog published on Thursday 2nd February 2012, describing Pillai’s article as “well-researched, authoritative and thorough.” The Minister said the article, highlighting Sierra Leone’s constructive efforts at reforming and transforming the country under President Koroma, is a realistic refelection of the present situation in the country. He also praised Ambassador Bockari Kortu Stevens and staff of the Sierra Leone Embassy in Washington DC for doing a commendable job.

Charge D’Affairs ai Counselor Sheku Mesali, Hon Sheka (Shekito) Tarawally, and Sheku Bangura Senior Advisor to the Executive Director

On January 27th 2012, Ambassador Stevens who is also accredited to the Bretton Woods institutions made an appropriate representation for a budgetary support of twenty four million United States dollars ($24M), a one–tranche budget support disbursement meant to support the Government of Sierra Leone’s overall reform program towards growth and structural reforms, supported by the World Bank’s Multi-Donor Budget Support (MDBS) arrangement.

Pasco Gerald Temple

Information attaché

Sierra Leone Embassy

1701, 19th Street NW,

Washington D.C

Zip 20009

Skype: pasco.temple