Mohamed Daramy of Dry Yai Crew visa to USA revoked

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Mohamed Dovy Daramy (r) with Pupa Bajah (l) - Daramy is stuck in Australia after his US re-entry visa was revoked prior to its expiration date

Sierra Leonean reggae artist Mohamed “Dovy” Daramy of Bajah and the Dry Crew is reported to be stranded in Australia after his US visa was revoked.

Daramy left New York for Australia in January to meet and propose to his now fiancee Ari Zager. The two love birds were in line to board a flight to Hawaii when Daramy was informed that his US re-entry visa which was to expire in May 2012 was no longer valid.

Zager, the fiancee says she has also been placed on a “no fly list” to the US. She believes that perhaps Mohamed Daramy has been targeted because of his faith as a muslim. The pair are trying to work with the US Embassy in Sierra Leone where Daramy’s visa was issued.

Daramy says he is afraid to return home to West Africa for fear of political persecution. Daramy told the Lacrossetribune where the story was first reported that his life had been threatened for “speaking against the government” back in Sierra Leone.

“I don’t want to be in Sierra Leone during elections, My life will be at risk”, he said.

Until now, Daramy and the rest of the Dry Yai Crew seemed comfortable at home. They did a string of performances last year.

And the last time any member of the Dry Yai crew released an anti-government song was Pupa Bajah’s “Pack en Go” — widely seen as a pro APC song. 

So if Daramy claims to have been threatened by the government of Sierra Leone, then not only is it surprising,  but dis na big big case.

  • ogbomoto 13000

    hey 2 birds (baja and mohamed), PLEASE NOTE THAT MUSIC IS A PROFESSION& NOT A CRITISING TOOL AS U HAVE BEEN USING IT FOR, i think this might learn u a lesson, music is for comforting the soul, most likley u guys lack good education and see that u can just bump into any profession, please i am advising as we all are young guys , u either sing sober music or u stop the critisism, to every action u must expect a reaction sso u choose,

  • Foday Bangura

    This dovey fellow is giving salone and the current government a bad reputation. I do not ever recall the current government arresting an artist for criticizing them. Moreover, I do not ever remember Daramy or any member of the dry yai crew releasing any single against the ruling party. I do remember Bajah releasing a single against an MP for having sex with an underage girl, but that was under the kabbah regime. Daramy don fen ensef pan tight place so e dae look for way out of am. Make en uman file for am so dat e go get green card, IDIOT.

  • Jay

    so how is this beneficial to us..Dnt think this should have made the news and the last bit of what he says about not going back for fare of persecution is his own business dont think you should come out and say you are in doubt of what he said..Not entirely sure how this has anything to do with anyone, is just bare hating and people are all getting excited about it..Typical Salone article

  • Jay

    fair correct my last! 🙂

  • B. M. Kamara, Esq.

    It is mind boggling to me that this guy would make such a ridiculous statement that has no basis in fact. It is a statement that is clearly a convenient afterthought, no doubt geared towards obtaining asylum, that he would now claim fear of prosecution should he return to Sierra Leone. As reported, he was in Sierra Leone last year. Had the government had any designs to arrest or prosecute him, it would have done so then; it would not have waited until now– when his ability to visit/stay in America is revoked — to do so. It is shameful, if not bothering on treason, that he would soil his mother land in a foreign country for his own benefit. As one commenter mentioned or implied, when has this government arrested any artist because such artist made a song critical of its policies? If more talented men like Emmerson can freely live in Sierra Leone, despite having made songs critical of this government, why would this clown not be able to do the same? Here is some free advise, Mr. Reggae man: If this ridiculous statement of yours was made on the advise of counsel, go back and get whatever money you gave him/her becuase his/her law degree, based on this advise, is not worth the paper that it is printed on. Here is another free advise, genius (not): You have a body of work out there. It is that body of work that would be looked at, juxtaposing it with similarly situated individuals (that is, other artists that have made similar or same songs critical of the government) that your petition will be judged by. By the way, don’t even think about seeking asylum in the United States now that you are in Australia because U.S. immigration laws clearly presume you to be safe in whatever country you are now in (Australia) outside of your home country. Your best bet is to seek asylum down under (Australia). I hear our abroginee (phonetic) brothers and sisters love reggae music. You can entertain them. Just make sure that you don’t throw them under the bus as you just did your motherland.

    • M. ALIEU ISCANDARI ESQ

      As a lawyer that pracitces inthe area of immigration law i say, leave this man alone to seek asylum anywhere he chooses. He is dpoing what he needs to do to get where he wants to get to. I see nothing wrong with that. immigraion personnel are trained to ferret out nonsenseical applications.

  • Jay

    He is marrying an American girl so he can get visa !!! They put it in paper so they can get money ( donations ) from people .
    He ask her in Febuary his visa was ending in May …. Do the math , He always cheat on her anyway

  • Well i mean a part of me thinks that his statement maybe an exaggeration of the truth. if you remember the last time that those guys were here it was during the Dec RFM/Black Leo rubbish that was going on (Machetes in the streets). and unfortunately Dry Yai crew was def caught up in that (by virtue of being musicians), i don’t know how much of it was due to the Govt tho. but at that time the Govt was pretty harsh to all members of the music industry. there were heavy fines placed on their promoters not to mention losses due to the cancellation of shows (everyone was pissed). they were left with no money and even had problems finding a place to stay (they stayed with my family a couple of nights). after all of the loses with their management/promoters they had no money to get back to the states, they appealed to the Govt for help and were turned away… they struggled to find their way until the ban was lifted, did a few shows and i assume made enough money to get back to the states. needless to say, they left with a bitter taste in their mouths and i do know for a fact that there were some confrontations with Govt officials. now do i think that those confrontations mean that Mr. Daramy can not come back to live in SL… ?? Further more lets be honest, lots of people are afraid of election time, not just here in SL but in any African country, and for my case i present the past two years of elections in West Africa. No country held elections with out bloodshed, NONE. and SL is no different our elections are still a few months away and already there has been blood shed on two separate occasions.

  • Abdulai Kargbo

    Well, this is simple for the US immigration authorities. Check with the US embassy in Freetown, where I am writing from. Freedom of expression, among many others, is highly respected by the previous government and the present government in Freetown. You only need to read our newspapers and listen to our radio stations or even our television, which was transformed into a public broadcaster by the present government, where freedom of expression is exhibited every now and then. Too bad an excuse, Daramy.

  • YKJ

    These comments are so interesting. First off I believe the publisher
    of the article has the right to publish whatever they want. She is not
    the first person to publish this, so whats the issue?

    Second off, to Victoria Sesay, its very interesting on your breakdown
    of what hapepend with Dry Yai Crew in Sierra Leone, but unfortunately
    your account is incorrect. I know the first hand account of it, and
    they didnt hustle until they got enough money to get back to the
    states, it really had more to do with technicalities than actually
    money.As I can say for a fact because I know how the situation
    transpired, I have accounts from the promoters you speak about, from
    the actual record label, and from the members themselves. I am sorry
    to branch off topic but I think it is important as many of us like to
    analyze a situation when we are not 100 percent sure of it.

    Third off, the name calling is so uncalled for and most of the
    individuals commenting do not know this individual person nor their
    circumstance and it is very disrespectful to refer to soembody as an
    “idiot”.

    Lastly, I would like to see what some of us would do or say if we were
    in this position? If you were in a different country and just suddenly
    told that your visa was banned and revoked, would you all wilfully go
    back to Sierra Leone? Would you all turn yourself in to immigration
    officials at the end of your visa and voluntarily deport yourself. Or
    would you all do or say whatever you have to do to stay in the
    country, be it the US or any other developed country? We as Sierra
    Leoneans need to be real with ourself and stop looking at things from
    one dimension.

    • @ YKJ i agree with you, that we should look at stories from different dimensions, if you read my post closely you can see that i said “i assume” that that is what they had to do. And any thing else that i stated in my post i heard from the horses mouths, as i also stated in my post, they stayed at my house a few nights… so if they were lying to me then *insert ‘Ye’ shrug*. I was just trying to present a different dimension to the argument that he is an “idot” cause i felt a lot of people forgot about the events of last year and thought that Dry Yai’s trip was all fun and games. weather it was money, technical difficulties, or what ever; they had some type of issues last time that ‘could possibly’ be the reason he doesn’t want to come back. now am i in his head? was i at the boarder with him? NO… just giving my thoughts.
      I also totally agree with you on your last point about being real, if you are in that situation you don’t know what you would do. and like i said people are afraid to come back to SL especially during this election time (i personally may find myself on vacation in a neighboring country if things get too hot). i don’t look down on him for what he said tho. Many Many people (some of our own friends and family I’m sure) have said much worse things about SL to get a green card / stay in another country. *you gotta do what you gotta do* His statements just came out because he is a public figure. Should he take a bashing for doing the same thing that millions of SL expats have done in the past and are still doing today? Shoot i know if i was in a jam i would say some stuff real quick about being a marginalized woman.. lol no but on a more serious note, its just a blog no one get upset it’s just news put your comments and move on. like our friend from the embassy said SL is currently embracing freedom of speech. lets enjoy it 🙂

  • YKJ

    @Victoria Sesay…good points! I agree 🙂

  • RJV

    This guy is now back peddling because of the stupid things his girlfriend wrote in an american paper for attention and money !!
    There both stupid , to dis his own country is so insulting . For her to say its because he is Muslim is ridiculous . No government revokes visas due to race or hearsay everything gets investigated there not being honest there is much more to this story than they are saying . For his girlfriend to be on a ” no fly ” list also , that proves race and religion has nothing to do with this ….. They have broken the law they are guilty of something , it is ” very fishy ” just like she claims.
    Everyone knows there are lawyers that work on pro bono if they can trust there clients , but yet there begging for everyone else’s money , i’m guessing because no Lawyer will take there case as they can see the very many holes this story has.

  • reno wales

    I know and was married to this crazy lady, I bet it was her mouth that got them in trouble. The stories I could tell… If it was not for the charges of slander I would face. I didn’t make my money by slamming my brakes on when a city bus was behind me, so I don’t won’t to blow it on stupid crap.

  • wow

    WOW HEARING YOU LOUD ABD CLEAR RENO !!! GUESSING THEY PLAYED YOU TOO , EASY TRICK TO HAVE FALLEN FOR . I HOPE YOUR OK . SHE IS ( ARIANNE ZAGER ) PURE EVIL !!!

  • WOW and RENO!!!

    Oh Jpseph and Winnie poor fools!!!! Don’t be mad cause you could never keep the attention of them…..poor babies!!!!!! As I know both of you GOT DUMPED!!! She left you Reno and he left you WINNIE. GET OVER IT because someone does not want to be with you or are happy with you does not mean they are evil just means you were boring!!!!!!!