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Page added on June 16, 2010
In addition to other weaknesses and faults, the APC is known for its strong headedness, for its tendency to stick to a course once it has decided on a line of action. It doesnâ€™t matter whether such views, decisions or actions are contrary to public opinion. The party has decided and thus it shall be.
The current debate or discussion is one such example; the other day I described it as obstinacy but OBDURACY may be a more apt description. How else could the party continue to pursue a course that many of its own members concede is ill timed?
To the party their core decisions are sacrosanct, like the Law of the Medes and Persians which cannot be rescinded or altered. Thus the stage is now set for a witch hunt to which the misnomer of an inquest or investigation is being applied. And the party is pressing on despite mumblings that the international community, particularly those countries whose hands are feeding us are expressing reservations.
On the ground there are public debates that sometimes tend to be acrimonious and believe me they are not APC versus SLPP as is often presented by the African Champion newspaper, but one that involves alleged supporters of the APC.
The latest survey by the Awoko newspaper yesterday reveals that while 22% of those phoning in think the inquiry is timely 79% think that it is untimely. But the government, spurred on by the African Champion who reports â€œmassive support for the proposalâ€ persists in its pursuit of its â€œpound of fleshâ€ and doesnâ€™t care if it is accompanied by an â€œounce of blood.â€ The minister of information and the attorney- general would have had their way.
David Tam-Baryoh, backed by Olu Gordon believes that the government is on a right course. If this government is not out on a witch hunt, if the APC leadership is not specifically out for the heads of John Benjamin and Maada Bio of the opposition SLPP, why does it not simultaneously set up inquiry into the deaths of the ten young men executed by firing squad under the AFRC, or the shooting in cold blood of lieutenant Sandi allegedly by SIM Turay who rumour has is to head the National security agency?
Why does not our government which is so concerned about human rights and avenging the deaths of Bambay Kamara and others, not open an investigation into the death Konneh during the August 18 1997 studentsâ€™ demonstration? Or of the lad of 12 who was shot merely because he was a news vendor carrying publications inimical to the interest of the APC?
What about the deaths in places like Shenge and the violence in Bombali, Tonkolili and the Bumpeh chiefdom of Moyamba district or in Kambia all of which occurred during the 1982 elections under our one party constitution?
I do not support those who would want to compare the NPRCâ€™s deaths with those of Gabriel Kaikai and Francis Minah or with those of Mohamed Sorie Fornah and others.
Olu Gordon has asked for my reaction if any of the victims was a relation of mine. That indeed did happen in 1977 and all I did was to ask my church leaders who visited me in hospital to pray for the perpetrators. In addition one of my first actions as Resident minister was to make a public statement from Baiwala for all those who had fled following that particular incident to return home, a statement for which my President queried me later.
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