A local daily newspaper in Freetown has published that it has gathered that one Alpha Kagbo who was residing at Black Hall Road community, in the Eastern end part of Freetown, is currently on the run as the people of Black Hall road community and the police have declared him wanted because he is believed to be a Gay.
According to report gathered so far, Alpha Kargbo and Mohamed Kamara are young lovers who have been in relationship since their childhood.
This press can also confirm that Alpha Kargbo was a busser and at the same time assistant teacher of the Quarry Community Primary School at Benz garage, Black hall road, Black Hall Road in the eastern of Freetown and he was later dismissed from the school because he was caught with his lover Mohamed Kamara.
This press can further disclosed that in August 20, 2016 at around 2:30am, Alpha Kargbo and Mohamed Kamara were caught at Black Hall Community, PWD market whilst kissing each other and when people of the community sought to arrest him, he put up stiff resistant and in the process he severely injured two community members. The matter was later reported to the police and he was declared wanted by police.
On behalf of the Black Hall Road Community, Chief Imam of the Jammeyatu nuru deen Mosque at Black Hall Road Community, Sheik Mohamed Bangura told this Press that the practice of homosexual is in contravention of the Holy Quran. He went on to say that the father of Alpha Kargbo is one of the active members of the Muslim Jamaat in Black Hall Road community.
He disclosed that when the father of Alpha Kargbo reported his son to the entire membership of the Islamic Council in the Eastern, the matter was officially handed over to the Black Hall Road Islamic Council for adjudication.
He said that after they sent several invitations to Alpha who is on the run, he openly refused to face members of the council and his actions further infuriated members of the Muslim community in Black Hall Road to chase him out of the community. He said that members of the Muslim Jamaat were doing so mainly for him not to further initiate other Muslim members into homosexuality.
One Islamic fanatic that preferred anonymity has confirmed to this press that if they found Alpha Kargbo and his colleague they will kill him for defying the Muslim Community.
His Excellency Peter Joseph Francis, Sierra Leone High Commissioner to Kenya who doubles as Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office in Nairobi (UNON), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) has on Tuesday 29th January 2019, presented his Letter of Credence to Madam Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Under- Secretary General and Executive Director to UN-Habitat and Acting Director General UNON.
The presentation of HE Peter Joseph Francis’ Letter of Credence took place at the UNON office in Nairobi and is in line with what he had described as an earlier advice he had to do a formal letter to the Special Representative of the UN in Nairobi, because, according to him, “the UNON plays a very important role in Africa.” This will further strengthen Sierra Leone’s bilateral relationship with the various UN agencies in Nairobi.
HE Peter Joseph Francis is the first Sierra Leonean appointed High Commissioner to Kenya, who had also on the 5th December 2018, presented his letter of credence to the Kenyan President, HE Uhuru Kenyatta, and two (2) days after on 7th December 2018, he did a courtesy call on the UNON office in Nairobi.
The UNON, the UN headquarters in Africa, was established by the General Assembly in 1996. The office is headed by a Director-General, at the Under-Secretary-General level and serves as the representative office of the Secretary-General in Nairobi and performs representation and liaison functions with permanent missions, the host-country and other Governments, and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations in Nairobi, as well as other organizations of the United Nations system in Kenya. UNON also facilitates cooperation between the United Nations and regional organizations; provides administrative and other support services to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat); provides joint and common services to other organizations of the United Nations system in Kenya, as applicable; and manages and implements the programmes of administration, conference services and public information and provides security and safety services for United Nations staff and facilities in the United Nations Office at Nairobi.
Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona, the coordinator of a mainly Christian militia faction in the Central African Republic and a senior African football executive, has been transferred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to face accusations of crimes against humanity and war crimes.
In a statement, the Court, which is based in The Hague, the Netherlands, detailed an extensive list of some of his alleged crimes, including murder, torture, persecution, mutilation, deportation or forcible transfer, enforced disappearance and “other inhumane acts.”
Mr Ngaïssona was arrested on 12 December last year in France, on a warrant for crimes allegedly committed in CAR during 2013 and 2014. In a press release, the ICC said that the date of his initial appearance before the court will be announced “soon.”
Speaking on Wednesday to UN News, ICC spokesperson Fadi El Abdallah outlined the next steps in the case: “The Pre-Trial Chamber Two of the ICC found reasonable grounds to believe that Mr Ngaïssona is liable for these charges”, he said, adding that the pre-trial hearing would “confirm the identity of the suspect, ensure that he understands the charges and confirms the language in which the proceedings should be conducted for his understanding”.
He said it would also set a date “to begin the confirmation of charges hearing, which is a pre-trial hearing allowing the judges to decide whether or not the case should move to a trial.”
The ICC Registrar, Peter Lewis, thanked the French authorities, and those of the Netherlands, for their cooperation in the arrest and transfer of the accused to the Court.
Mr. Ngaïssona, who was Minister of Youth and Sports under François Bozizé, President of the Central African Republic from 2003 to 2013, reportedly denies any involvement in the violence.
According to news reports, he was the political coordinator of the Christian anti-Balaka militia, which rose to prominence after the mainly Muslim Seleka rebels, swept Mr. Bozizé from power. The militia has been blamed for numerous killings since 2013.
Mr Ngaïssona was elected in February 2018 to the executive committee of the Confederation of African Football, despite the objections of some human rights groups.
Koidu City, Eastern Sierra Leone, Saturday 19 January 2019 – His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio has presented teaching and learning materials to support the free quality education programme in Kono district at an event held at the Koidu Girls’ Secondary School, KGSS.
The principal of KGSS, Bernadette Turay, said the free quality education programme was a laudable initiative and that Kono as a district was experiencing a positive result of the gesture, adding that the initiative had supported parents and teachers who could not meet the high fee demands for their children.
She referred to President Bio’s vision, to develop human capital for national development, as a step in the right direction, noting that without education the future of the country would be bleak. She noted that the western world was being admired because they put a premium on education and reiterated that the President was on the right track.
Chairman of the Kono District Council, Sahr Solomon Gbondo, said the free quality education had provided an opportunity for students to go to school without cost consideration for the first time in the history of the country. He recalled that government had pledged to provide core textbooks, adding that the presentation of those books was a testament to the government delivering on its promises.
Mr Gbondo also commended the government for approving a huge number of teachers and schools within the shortest possible time. He said the free quality education was a blessing to the country and therefore urged parents and children to make good use of the opportunity.
President Bio said the presentation ceremony was a manifestation that his government was one with the commitment to develop the country. He said Kono district should consider itself lucky for having a president in him who would think good for the district.
He said teaching and learning materials were key components in the free education programme and that was why his government had made efforts to provide the facility for students across the country. He, therefore, called on parents and teachers to provide the conducive learning environment for children to make themselves useful by acquiring quality education.
“I call on everyone to support and own the free quality education programme by managing and supervising each element of the programme. Parents have the responsibility to ensure compliance with the guidelines set for the safe handling of these materials. After the books, we will bring school buses for the students because we know they need it for safe and quick arrival in schools,” he said.
After recent Al Shabab attack in Kenya… Sierra Leone Embassy in Nairobi Says Staff and all Sierra Leoneans are safe!!
Sierra Leone diplomatic mission in Nairobi, which also serves as permanent representative to the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) has confirmed that it staff and all Sierra Leoneans based in the Kenyan capital are safe and sound.
This confirmation was made by His Excellency Peter Joseph Francis- Sierra Leone High Commissioner to Kenya and Permanent Representative to the UNON, UNEP and UN-Habitat, during an exclusive phone call interview with this writer in the evening hours of Tuesday 15th January 2019.
The confirmation of the HE Peter Joseph Francis of the safety of Sierra Leonean diplomats and Sierra Leonean citizens in Nairobi comes as Kenyan authority unleashed massive security in its capital- Nairobi after suspected al-Shabab militants attack at Dusit D2 Hotel, 14 Riverside Drive, Westlands, Nairobi, killing five (5) people and three (3) causalities currently admitted at the Age Kahn Hospital in Nairobi.
Meanwhile, according to Kenyan Nation Police Service release dated Tuesday 15th January 2019, and signed by the Inspector General Joseph Boinnet, at about 3pm EAT (12pm GMT, “a group of armed assailants attacked the Dusit complex in a suspected terror attack.”
On his efforts thus far in checking on and ensuring the safety of Sierra Leoneans in Nairobi, HE Peter Joseph Francis said sooner he got the information of the attack; he got the entire staff of Sierra Leonean High Commission in Nairobi in a single building that is electronically protected.
HE Peter Joseph Francis further confirmed that the Deputy Sierra Leone Special Representative to the United Nation (UN) in New York, Madam Victoria Sulaiman who was attending the UN meeting on the Environment, she was in his residence at 158 Mimosa Drive off Mimosa Road, Runda, Nairobi, doing fine.
HE Peter Joseph Francis said, however, he was worried about the welfare of a single Sierra Leonean whose office is said to be in the same building that was attacked. Upon reaching the family of the man, , HE Peter Joseph Francis said the family of the Sierra Leonean confirmed to him that the Sierra Leone is currently out of Nairobi and is currently in Uganda on another assignments.
Thus he said, so far every Sierra Leonean in Nairobi is safe and sound and that the Sierra Leone High Commission, situated at 57 Gigiri Court off UN Crescent, Gigiri, Nairobi, Kenya, has already resumed operation.
So far, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta during his statement on the attack on the morning hours of Wednesday 17th January 2019 from Nairobi said 14 people were killed and about 75 others rescued from the hotel. He said, the operation is over and that the militants have been neutralised.
President Uhuru Kenyatta during his televised broadcast thanked all Kenyans and international community for the robust and prompt action and the solidarity they show in combating the attack. He assured of safety for all.
Sierra Leone Police (SLP) in collaboration with members of the secrete Poro Society have issued search warrant for several alleged illegal miners in the township of Taiama, Eastern Provincial District of Kono.
Alimamy Amara Barrie and his friend Sahr Menjor were said to have left the capital Freetown, on invitation of the latter to commence mining in Taiama, Kono District. However for them, report gathered by this reporter said that on Saturday 5th November 2016, Alimamy Amara Barrie, Sahr Menjor and others were mining at the site when the chief approached them and was discussing with Sahr's uncle (Mr. Menjor) when some unidentified persons thronged and laid siege at their mining site with horrific weapons.
Eyewitness explained that after the siege at the mining site of Alimamy Amara Barrie, with intention of the intruders to arrest and forcefully initiate Alimamy and others into the traditional Poro Society, they all scattered into unidentified locations with none of the miners knowing where others went, except for Sahr's uncle who was captured with Alimamy Amara Barrie's mobile phone in his possession; hence, information about Alimamy was accessed.
Investigation by this newspaper indicates that Alimamy himself escaped to a place called Yamandu Village in the same Kono District. At Yamandu Village, we were told that he had notice that he was wanted by the police for illegal mining; and by the Poro Society, who alleged that the place Alimamy and others were mining was a bush reserved for the Secret Poro Society by Sahr's late father for their traditional activities, including initiation of youths. They say the only solution was for Alimamy and others to join their secret society.
Meanwhile, here in Sierra Leone, illegal mining is a criminal offence, and once one is indulged in such activities, and he is later apprehended, he is arrested, charged to court and later jailed.
In Sierra Leone, any individual or company found operating outside the scope of their license will be arrested and prosecuted. Section 21 (2) of the Mines and Minerals Act of 2009 clearly states that: “No person shall explore for or mine minerals except under and in accordance with a mineral right granted under this Act.”
Equally so, the traditional Poro Society is a male society, where young men in provincial areas of the country are sometimes forcefully initiated in a process that is mostly excruciatingly painful.
However, unfortunately for Alimamy and his colleagues, both the police and the Poro Society are searching for them for illegal mining in their sacred bush. Many are speculating that their own forceful initiation into the Poro Society could be fiercer and that they could likely die in there because the Poro leaders have personal grievance against them for throwing open challenge.
However, they are still on the run and nowhere to be found, whilst Sahr's uncle (Mr.Menjor) is helping the police with investigation.
The biggest and most covetous national achievement awards in Sierra Leone will not be held this year, the organizers have announced.
The event, which is usually organized at the end of every year by network professionals under the umbrella organization called All Works Of Life (AWOL), recognizes individuals and institutions who have made major impact in national development efforts.
Awardees come from every segment of society, from politicians to civil society activists, to business people to the ordinary Sierra Leonean.
In a statement released Monday morning, the organizers blamed the March general elections for the disruption, saying it mired its preparations for the awards. It also said because of the recent change
in government, it would be difficult to get eligible institutions for the awards.
“It was a challenge to put together an independent and credible Awards committee and our usual partners were constrained by uncertainties around the elections,” the statement, signed by AWOL’s Secretary General Ahmed Sahid Nasrallah, said.
It added: “Moreover, less than a year after the elections, no government agency would meet AWOL’s criteria for national recognition for the year under review.”
The statement however assured that the awards will continue in 2019. Members of AWOL and its organizing committee comprises representatives from all segments of society - politics, business, academia, etc.
The organization was formed under the patronage of the late business tycoon, Moseray Fadika. The organization is currently chaired by his protégé, Anthony Navo Junior, proprietor of the largest media house in the country – the Africa Young Voices Media Empire, which owns the AYV-Television, radio and newspaper.
Legal advice to the state on what steps to consider when removing public servants with secured job tenures from office
CHRISTIAN LAWYERS CENTRE - LEGAL LINK
Legal advice to the state on what steps to consider when removing public servants with secured job tenures from office
There is a worrying trend of impunity, blatant disregard for constitutionality, rule of law and due process by the executive arm of government especially in post conflict Sierra Leone. While past governments are not exempt from this abrogation, the current trends have not only exceeded expectations but have also attracted widespread international condemnations and outcry.
Unfortunately, state institutions which are supposed to proffer sound advice and guidance to the executive arm of government have become more political than political parties themselves. Hence, they lack the moral standing and high ground to proffer sound advice in this regard.
This legal opinion seeks to provide some common sensical approaches on how a government can remove a public servant with secured tenure from office in a more humane, respectful and dignified manner.
It is important to emphasize however that there is actually no sense in a government pursuing an ideology that seeks to replace public servants at will irrespective of their secured term of office. At the very least, public servant with secured tenures should be left to complete their tenures without any political interference,manipulation or control.
But where a government seems desperate to replace public servants notwithstanding their secured tenures, there are ways it can go about doing this that will help produce less conflicting, divisive, hurtful and devastating outcomes.
LEGAL LINK, a non- profit legal company that defends the rights of vulnerable groups including workers rights believes that if this piece of opinion is given due consideration by the state, it may help set good precedent in terms of respectability of the rule of law, constitutionality and due process in the country.
There are five legitimate ways a government can remove a public servant whose position is of interest to them but is however secured in watertight provisions within a legal framework.
Firstly, the government must approach the public servant in a peaceful, friendly and respectable manner requesting his resignation. The government must educate and persuade the public servant on the importance of their wanting of his office to be manned by a political party loyalist. The government must also assure the public servant that all his salaries and full benefits will be paid to him and on time if he resigns from the job. You may be surprised to see how many self-induced resignations that will take place in key public service positions without any overt pressure from the government. Respect is key and everyone needs it.
Secondly, where the first approach fails to work, the government should make some offers to the public servant. Everyman has a price that can make him bow down and give in. The offer could be in the form of an appointment to another parastatal, deputy minster or deputy ambassador position in a remote country etc. The fear of going without a job is perhaps the strongest reason why some public servants are afraid to resign from their secured jobs in the public service. The government must bring to the table an alternative source of income and make a bold appointment to another place. When the public servant willingly takes up his new job offer then the old secured job becomes automatically vacant to be filled. No critic will then be correct to say that the public servant was illegally removed.
The third approach is the patience approach and is usually referred to as the best approach. The government can patiently wait for the specified term of the public servant as stated in the legal framework to elapse before replacing him. Majority of the legislations that guarantee fixed tenure does not exceed 5 years. The second 5 year term is usually at the prerogative of the executive arm of government. Hence, it is wisdom for any government to ensure at the very least that a public servant enjoys his or her 5 years term with proper supervision where doubt exists. This will help to guarantee the independence and credibility of democratic institutions.
I call the fourth approach, the drastic approach. This approach actually demands removing the public servant albeit in line with due process. When the three options mentioned above fails to work and the government is desperate for the position, then it has no option but to remove the Public servant following however the due process of the law. There is no office created by law that does not have a removal clause or procedure. If the removal process demands sending the public servant to a tribunal, the government must obey the procedure, no matter how tasking it may be. As the public servant faces trial to defend himself, the government can have someone act on his behalf temporarily until final determination of the matter. The challenge however with this approach is that it may be delaying and cumbersome and often times, the votes required for removal may not be secured. This is why many governments finds such approach disincentivising despite its legal advantages.
Last but not the least, is the passing of a Constitutional amendment law in parliament annulling all secured job tenures within legislations.
The government can pass a law (or amend section 61 of the Constitution) abolishing the secured tenures of public servants in extant legislations and subjecting them to the president’s prerogative in relation to appointment and dismissals. This will then become the vogue and it will help make clear to all public servants that their offices will elapse when the government that appoints them vacates office.
LEGAL LINK is of the firm belief that the above approaches are far better than the disgraceful and inhumane and illegal methods currently being employed in terms of removal of public servants with secured job tenures. It is a shame that some government officials have even openly defended and legitimized the bastardization of all our legislations and constitution without regard to due process.
This statusquo is anathematic to democracy, good governance, rule of law and constitutionality; and will certainly put Sierra Leone in a bad light before the international community as is currently happening now.
It is important to also emphasize that Sierra Leone is not a police state but rather a democracy and the government must endeavor to act within the confines of the law and adhere to due process where it intends removing public servants that are protected by a fixed tenure. Enough of the tit for tat approach!
Where the executive arm
of government continues to disregard due process, it is expedient for Parliament, the law makers, to demand respect for its laws from the Executive and also the Judiciary to enforce and hold to account the Executive regarding adherence to the laws passed by parliament through issuance of specific orders and directives.
It is only by adhering to the above that we truly can create the enabling environment for peace and national cohesion to thrive in our nation.
All Rights Reserved
CHRISTIAN LAWYERS CENTRE
CHRISTIAN LAWYERS CENTRE (a.k.a LEGAL LINK) is a non– profit legal company that provides legal assistance through public interest litigation in the courts, hold state and private actors accountable, provide comprehensive legal education and sensitization, seek redress and justice for the religious community as well as vulnerable groups; and enforce respect for domestic and international laws that guarantee fundamental human rights and freedoms.
Christian Lawyers Centre has received numerous complaints from vulnerable groups and persons about the ongoing health workers strike action and its impact on their right to health, life and dignity as a person.
It could be recalled that the Sierra Leone Medical & Dental Association as well as the Junior Doctors Association staged a nationwide protest several weeks ago in a bid to agitate for comprehensive healthcare reforms within Sierra Leone’s healthcare system.
Amongst the numerous demands sought by the health workers includes improved salaries and better conditions of service. Negotiations between the health associations and the ministries of health and finance have seen however several twist and turns and have also been largely unsuccessful.
The impact of the deadlock in negotiations has been far and wide reaching. There are unconfirmed reports that a lot of people in hospitals have been adversely affected leading to fatal consequences. Vulnerable groups such as persons with disabilities, pregnant women, lactating mothers, children as well as older persons have been worse hit by the on-going strike action.
Admittedly, while such strike actions have occurred in time past, Christian Lawyers Centre is particularly concerned over the prolong and staggering engagements that have ensued so far and the way and manner in which the current negotiations are being handled as well as the state institutions that have voluntarily involved themselves in the negotiation process.
Notably and with particular concern is the letter written by the top management of the Sierra Leone Police dated 13th December 2018 inviting the President of the Sierra Leone Medical & Dental Association at the police headquarters for an engagement over the impasse.
Without prejudice to the constitutional duty of the Sierra Leone Police (SLP) to ensure law and order and protect lives and properties, it is certainly an overstretch for the SLP to intervene over a peaceful protest by legitimate associations acting through lawful means to seek the welfare of their members. The invitation by the police could therefore be best described as a ‘subtle intimidation tactics’ aimed at silencing and suppressing the legitimate aspirations of health workers in the country.
In support of this view, we note with utter consternation and disbelief that the Sierra Leone Police in their letter dated 13th December 2018 never saw the need and importance to invite all the relevant parties for a comprehensive engagement (the Minister of Health, the Minister of Finance, the Sierra Leone Labour Congress, the Junior Doctors Association and even civil society organizations working around health rights)but rather decided to only limit the invitation to the President of the Sierra Leone Medical & Dental Association.
This omission, we humbly submit, questions the SLP’s claim to have acted in good faith since a comprehensive resolution cannot have been reached in the absence of the other relevant parties within the health sector.
It is important to also emphasize that Sierra Leone is a signatory to many international and regional instruments that guarantees the right to health. Chief amongst many others are the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, (ICCPR), CEDAW, the ILO Conventions and Labour Standards, the African Charter on Human and People's Rights,the Maputo Protocol and the Abuja Declaration on Health to name but a few.
All of the above legal instruments put obligations on the government of Sierra Leone to absolutely guarantee the right to health for its citizens and ensure improved conditions of service for healthcare workers. Any attempt therefore to deviate from these obligations would amount to a violation of international law.
While the 1991 Constitution of Sierra Leone does not guarantee the right to health as well as its enforceability, it is vital to stress however that the same constitution under section 16 does guarantee the right to life and approves of its enforceability in the courts of law should there be a violation of the same.
It is this window of opportunity that Christian Lawyers Centre aims to explore and bring public interest litigations in the superior courts of Sierra Leone for and on behalf of vulnerable groups and suffering masses that have been worse hit by this impasse should this matter continues to persist.
No doubt, a state’s failure to address the comprehensive healthcare challenges of its citizens would negatively affect their enjoyment of the right to life.THIS IS THE PREMISE OF OUR CASE!
While we acknowledge the immense strides that have been made by government in terms of budgetary support to the health sector, we hope that the government of Sierra Leone through its relevant institutions and agencies will speedily resolve this matter in the best interest of the suffering masses.
Christian Lawyers Centre (Legal Link)