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The security forces attached to Kambia District in the North of Sierra Leone have linked mysticism to President Ernest Bai Koroma’s intuitiveness to establish the Attitudinal and Behavioural Change Secretariat as a springboard to propel a speedy economic, political and social advancement. (Photo: A female Police Officer making a statement)
The military, police and prisons operatives in the strategic district that shares a leaky boarder with Guinea made reverence to the ABC Secretariat’s formation on Thursday June 14th this year when top executives of the Secretariat paid courtesy calls on them at their respective locations to sensitize them on the “ABC Concept” and “Relevance of Political Tolerance” ahead of the impending crucial November 17th 2012 Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Council elections.
“ABC Secretariat is a big-big blessing,” form the common denominator of the respective statements of the Kambia military, police and prison bosses.
Addressing the military officers at their 11 Infantry Battalion Malikia Barracks along the Freetown Kambia Road the National Coordinator and Second-in-Command of ABC Secretariat, Madam Nanette B. Thomas underscored that the military is a noble institution being that it is charged with the responsibility to defend the state’s territorial integrity. With this sacred task Madam Thomas engendered the need for this institution to be governed by positive attitudes and behaviors. She informed the attentive military corps that tricks like drug addiction, misuse of military assets, domestic violence, disregard for orders and brutalization of defenseless civilians are negative attitudes and behaviours that are giving the Regimental Sierra Arm Forces a bad public image. She therefore called on them to desist from these acts and endeavor to add prestige to their institution. Madam Thomas took her time to convince the soldiers to be nationalistic and patriotic. She admonished that since the military is an apolitical institution the soldiers must avoid their active participation in national politics and advised them to be very cautious before, during and after the 2012 democratic polls. According to her the soldiers like any other Sierra Leonean can easily transform their off-putting attitudes and behaviours to attractive ones by managing their finances, relationships, environments, spiritualities and health efficiently.
She warned them against over magnification of issues, destructive labeling of others, imperative thinking, mind reading and the formation of cliques within their rank and files, their excellences in peace-keeping missions around the globe and encouraged them to be courageous, understanding and patient.
Making a statement, the Executive Director of ABC Secretariat, Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas emphasized the points of Madam Thomas and educated the soldiers that long gone are the days when soldiers held Sierra Leone to ransom by staging coups. He encouraged the soldiers to love their profession and avoid future embarrassments by interfering with the growing democracy of the country. Dr. Thomas persuaded the officers to advance in their respective academic qualifications as according to him this can privileged them to promotions and thus higher emoluments.
Responding Captain Morray Koroma and RSM Foday Marrah thanked the ABC Secretariat’s executives for visiting them and assured that they are in readiness to fully collaborate with the Secretariat in seeing that the RSLAF regains its former enviable international reputation.
At the U Division Kambia Police Station the Secretariat’s bosses schooled the police officers to bear in mind that their institution among others is the first law enforcement body. With this all important duty they called on the officers to be professional in dispensing their duties and avoid trivializing and obstructing the rule of law. The Executive Director and National Coordinator of ABC Secretariat engaged the mindset and heart-set of the police personnel to stop extorting bribes from the public more so drivers and bike riders as according to them this does not only dent the Sierra Leone Police’s already battered image, but also causes uncalled for loss of meaningful lives through accidents. Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas and Madam Nanette Thomas pleaded with the officers to endeavor to rebrand the SLP’s image which has been publicly perceived as the most corrupt institution in the country. They finally advised the officers to remain perfectly apolitical in the course of the impending democratic elections.
Responding to the ABC Secretariats bigwigs, the Support Officer of Kambia Police Station Assistant Superintendent of Police, Mr. G.K. Cuffey admitted to the prevalence of bad attitudes and behaviours within his institution but however maintained that there are plenty disciplined officers in the police force. He thanked the Secretariat for calling on his station and obliged his officers to make good use of the sensitization lectures which he classed as a big blessing for them. The MOU signed by the Sierra Leone Police, the SLRTA, the Commercial Bike Riders and the ABC Secretariat was later handed over to the Support Officer.
Dr. Thomas and Madam Thomas later called on the Kambia Prisons Department where they further stressed the need for prisons officers to maintain exemplary attitudes and behaviours while treating prisoners. The two ABC Secretariat’s bosses who have together served as political prisoners in the latter 90’s brought the officers to the understanding that prisons are not suppose to be artificial hells but rather correctional centers that must transform inmates to positively changed individual that could contribute to the development of their communities after serving their jail terms. They charged the importation of harmful drugs and offensive weapons, stealing of cooking condiments, misuse of prison vehicles and the disregard of traffic rules as typical negative attitudes and behaviours manifested by prison offices and advised them to be apolitical in their dealings. The Executive Director and National Coordinator of ABC Secretariat encouraged the prison officers to maintain good standards by putting up positive attitudes and behaviours.
Thanking the ABC Secretariat’s executives for what he classed as a timely and very educative sensitization exercise, the Officer-In-Charge of Kambia Prisons, Mr. Andrew Mansaray assured that he and his personnel will make good use of the lecture and pleaded with the Secretariat to keep visiting them from time to time.
By Momoja Lappia
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