My blog post on Valentine Strasser is to date one of the most clicked on topics on switsalone blog. And while conversations with the Minisiter of Defense a year ago seemed like they would amount to a national effort to raise Strasser’s living conditions were futile. Last week rumors circulated that Strasser was in Touba, Senegal for the past 2 years trying to cure dimentia.
A Senegalese political news website politicosn reported that Strasser was in Dakar, i couldn’t find the original ariticle but i found another french link referring to the report.
“l’ancien Président de la Sierra Leone Valentine Strasser (1991-1996) est rattrapé par des crises de démence et qu’il a rejoint la ville sainte de Touba pour soigner sa maladie chez un ami sénégalais. Renversé en 1996, il est depuis lors sans le sou. Selon le site sénégalais, le Président Valentine Strasser séjourne depuis plus de deux ans au Sénégal, à Touba Précisément. D’après la même source, il a été récemment aperçu en haillons dans les rues de la ville sainte, lors du dernier Magal de Touba. Rattrapé par des crises de démence, il est venu se soigner dans la ville sainte chez un ami sénégalais, selon la source.”
Translated they report that Strasser has been recently sighted on the streets, a drunkard and crazy and he has been in the holy city of Touba trying to get cured.
An article in the Torchlight Newspaper though suggests that the whole story is a lie. That either there is someone in Touba pretending to be Strasser or that there is someone in Sierra Leone trying to debase Strasser lower than he has already gone. In the Torchlight article Strasser denies any claims that he is crazy, drunk or in senegal.
“I was taken aback when going through details of a publication in the Exclusive newspaper dated 22nd July 2010 and realized that such act of unconfirmed and uninvestigative journalism nearly lends credence to what people refer to as ‘junk’ journalism” retorted Strasser. “What was related in that newspaper last week was utterly misleading and unsubstantiated that do not bear any taint of reality”. The former head of state fumed.
My position on Strasser remains the same, the government needs to restore and respect his status as a former head of state. He is no more guilty than the rest of the NPRC rat pack currently enjoying freedom and prosperity in freetown.
To find out more about Valentine Strasser: http://switsalone.blogspot.com/2009/09/sos-valentine-esegragbo-melvine.html