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Page added on June 22, 2012
The main opposition party, the Sierra Leone People;s Party (SLPP) has today called for the immediate establishment of an Independent Police Complaints Board to address the excesses and human rights abuses of the Sierra Leone Police in the wake of the series of killings of unarmed civilians by the OSD
At a press conference at the party’s headquarters at Wallace Johnson Street, the Chairman and Leader of the SLPP Mr. John Oponjo Benjamin (in photo) said the setting up of an Independent Police Complaints Board which was first recommended by the international community in April 2009, will restore confidence in the police and reassures the citizens of this county of their safety and protection by a force which was once proudly known as a force for good. “The Board will ensure that any policeman who commits a crime faces not only disciplinary action but will be charged to court where necessary and punished for his action”, said Mr. Benjamin.
He regretted however that four years after the recommendation was made in a communiqué signed with the government following the series of unprovoked and violent attacks of SLPP supporters, the government was yet to implement it. “At various times when violence has taken place this government under President Koroma has not only been slow in its condemnation but the promise of speedy investigation and action has never been realized, findings not normally made public and culprits not brought to book, thus promoting an atmosphere of impunity”, said Mr. Benjamin.
The SLPP chairman accused the Sierra Leone Police of too much involvement in politics recalling when in 2007 shortly after President Koroma won the run-off elections, police took to the street in uniform dancing openly in celebration of the APC victory; in another instance, a gang of the police along with a group of APC thugs comprehensively looted the SLPP headquarters at Wallace Johnson Street.
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