To be a Dual Citizen or So you have two passports!!!!

0
1023

Its been recently announced that the parliament of the government of Sierra Leone has since retracted the law from the 1976 consensus that said that no person could hold a Sierra Leonean citizenship in conjunction with that of another nation. This news has been received with much happiness and jubilation among Salone peoples all over the world…US/UK especially. Many people couldn’t stand the idea of paying 40 pounds or 100 plus dollars for a visa to the Salone embassy before they embarked on their vacations. Those funds however, previously went to the upkeep of Sierra Leonean embassies; generally under funded with scarce resources. I wonder what they will do now?
Though most people usually take me to be an American citizen…a carrier of the “blue book”, I must confess that my book is and always has been green. Though this has not necessarily been by choice, I can honestly say that I have always rejected the idea of becoming an American citizen. Whenever I announced that I wasn’t American, I would usually get, “oh but you’re going take it when you can right? “Of course not”, I would retort as I saw no reason why I should become an American citizen.
To that response most people would say become an American, “so you don’t have to take a visa to go to Europe” to be followed by the less popular “in case anything ever happens in Sierra Leone, you would be evacuated” or my father’s very appealing and sensible
“for social security” and finally, “so you can be American”. Though these reasons were all justified in their own right, I still wanted to hold on to my green book. With so much of me dissolving into the great “melting pot” the green book is the last physical item that reminds me of who I am and keeps my fate grounded to that of the Sierra Leonean people.
But…….that was then…Now I could have both, have my cake and eat it too! I don’t have to give up the green for the blue and I am happy that it never came to that because I don’t think that I could have done so, simply based on principle….cause I know that many people who never gave back their green book even though they had taken their American oath.
These books will be the testimony of my cultural identity…the Africa and the America, the have not and the have, the developed and the underdeveloped, the beginning and the on going, the where I want to be versus the where I am, side by side holding hands like two uniformed children. Having two citizenships also means that I will always have a safe haven…a place to run to when the other becomes overwhelming. However, I hope that I am always running to Sierra Leone and that it will always be my sweet sweet sweet salone. What a parallel!!!! Sierra Leone and America….both together in my mind, one of me in both of them…green and blue.