Below is a Press Release from the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) announcing that the President of Sierra Leone Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma will not be participating in a pre-elections debate. According to the release this will not happen because of Maada Bio’s behavior during last weeks political rally. Bio apparently blocked the President’s convoy. You can read about that incident here but see the release below for more information. The last time there was a presidential debate in Sierra Leone in 2007 everyone turned up except for then Vice President Berewa who was the SLPP presidential candidate. The Sierra Leone Association of Journalists had scheduled this year’s debate for October 30th. That may no longer happen or perhaps they might go ahead without the president as they did without Berewa then.
Press Release –
APC National Presidential
Sierra Leone on
October 18, 2012.The public is hereby informed that the unwarranted and unlawful obstruction of the presidential motorcade by the SLPP presidential candidate Rtd. Brig. Julius Maada Bio demonstrated total disregard for constituted authority and the rule of law.The orders of the police were brazenly disregarded by Rtd. Brig. Julius Maada Bio, but for the timely intervention of H.E the President an ugly confrontation with the police would have led to a breach of our hard won peace. President Koroma demonstrated maturity and statesmanship and ordered his convoy to stop. This magnanimous action led to the avoidance of lethal confrontation between the presidential bodyguards and the SLPP flag bearer’s entourage.In view of the above, the APC National Presidential Campaign Committee has accordingly advised H.E the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma not to share the same platform in the debate scheduled 30th October, 2012 with a man who has a penchant for violence and disrespect for law and order. The National Campaign Committee regrets any inconvenience this cancellation may cause the general public. However invitation for H.E’s participation in similar presidential debates will be considered on a case by case basis.
Signed: Hon. Alhaji Minkailu Mansaray