Vice president Sumana continues to be marginalised in the face of Ebola

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 28 July 2014 

Sam SumanaThe fight against the Ebola virus in Sierra Leone is everyone’s fight.

And when news broke several months ago of the deadly virus, found in neighbouring Guinea, Sierra Leone’s vice president Sumana was hard at work trying to help mobilise the country.

And as Chairman of the National Platform for Disaster Management, he actively convened meetings with stakeholders to formulate a plan of action, which could have helped prevented Sierra Leone succumbing to the deadly virus from Guinea.

But alas, alas, president Koroma could not resist once again, the temptation of standing on his vice president’s shadow, as Sam Sumana continues to struggle to make a positive impact on the office of vice presidency, since his appointment in 2007.

Even as Ebola was knocking on the nation’s door, Koroma saw it fit to steal Sam Sumana’s thunder, lest the vice president could emerge popular, should he succeed in mobilising the country against Ebola. What a shame.

Speaking to Global Times at his office in Freetown, this is what the vice president told the editor: “Despite those initial efforts, the responsibility of the National Platform for Disaster Management was removed from my office to the Office of the President, for reasons I don’t know.”

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Ebola crisis – a $14 million funding gap – our nation needs our help

Anthony Kamara Jr

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 28 July 2014

ebola centre sierra leoneThe news that Sierra Leone, like other countries in the sub-region, has been hit by the Ebola disease is no longer a secret.

If anything, I had assumed that the disease could easily be contained and our health authorities have the resources and expertise needed to contain it.

In fact, I was wrong! I was completely wrong after I began to understand the severity of the disease and its consequences.

Given the number of confirmed deaths in the country and reports that the only Sierra Leonean doctor in Kenema with the requisite expertise  that the country  has known and  has led the fight to defeat Ebola, has himself  fallen victim to the disease, it is clear all hands are needed to avoid exacerbating the already ugly situation.

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So called female genital mutilation (FGM) – the continuing vuvuzela

Dr. Sama Banya – Puawui

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 26 July 2014

londonSome years ago, I read a humorous story in a British newspaper about a New Zealander who had lived in Britain for many years, who then suddenly decided to return home.

When asked about his reason for leaving an adopted country that he confessed to have come to love, his answer was simple: “When I arrived here some years back, homosexual act was a criminal offense that carried a jail sentence. Then the government set up the Wolfenden Commission to look into prostitution and other social offenses. The government accepted the Commission’s recommendation that homosexual act between consenting adults must no longer be a crime.”

He said he was now leaving Britain, before a law came into force, which would make homosexual act compulsory.

We may laugh at the humour, but the West has gone a very long way in encouraging something which, even the Holy Bible condemns as an unnatural act.

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Nigeria – Africa’s strongest economy poised to become a major global force

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 25 July 2014

Nigeria infrastructureHaving recently been declared the strongest economy on the African continent, Nigeria is now said to have the potential to become a major global economic force in the coming decades, says a report published today by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI).

Notwithstanding the challenges that Nigeria faces, especially terrorism and its ongoing struggle with poverty, this latest report finds that Nigeria has the potential to expand its economy – year on year, by roughly 7.1 percent for the next sixteen years.

However, there is another side to the Nigeria story that has been overshadowed – both by the recent headlines and the persistence of outdated beliefs and assumptions about Nigeria’s economy.

The report published by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) and McKinsey’s Nigeria office, titled: ‘Nigeria’s renewal: Delivering inclusive growth in Africa’s largest economy’, examines the country’s economic potential.

It finds that with the right reforms and investments, Nigeria can become one of the world’s leading economies by 2030.

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Ebola – minister Kargbo has failed  

Noorudin Kaikai

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 24 July 2014

President Koroma honoured by Benin-PresidentThe incursion of Ebola into Sierra Leone has yet again, exposed the apathy of this APC Government in tackling issues of national crisis. (Photo: President Koroma receiving honour in Benin last week).

Whilst Ebola was taking lives in neighbouring Guinea, our Government was failing to prepare for the eventual outbreak in Sierra Leone.

As far as I know, there were no proactive measures put in place to ensure that our people are educated enough to face the challenges of this deadly disease.

And when it finally hit our shores, those in authority were still musing about what is truth and what is fiction.

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Doctor contracts deadly Ebola virus in Sierra Leone

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 23 July 2014

Health workers take blood samples for Ebola virus testing at a screening tent in the local government hospital in KenemaDoctor Umar Khan – a Sierra Leonean virologist and specialist, responsible for treating those diagnosed with the deadly Ebola virus, has himself fallen victim to the virus, in eastern Sierra Leone – the epicentre of the disease.

According to State House report, Dr. Sheik Umar Khan – who is 39 years old, is recognised as a “national hero” for his effort in leading the fight in controlling the Ebola outbreak.

The very ill doctor has been transferred to a special treatment ward, set up and managed by Medecins Sans Frontieres.

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Customs posts and security threat in Sierra Leone

Michael Fayia Kallon

The Sierra Leone Telegraph: 23 July 2014

APC prepares for posr-electoral warAn independent nation should be able to protect not only its citizens, but also its territorial integrity. In addition, it should meet conformities that satisfy the standards of the country’s security, even if not adequately, to protect her customs posts.

Yet, in Sierra Leone, customs posts are placed considerable distances from borders, providing no protection against modern-day pandemic diseases like EBOLA, terrorism, smuggling, and other vices that counter the needs of the state.

The result of poorly placed posts is the preponderance of rebel incursions that cost human lives, and lead to the potential downfall of the state.

For instance, in the Kissi Teng chiefdom in Sierra Leone, the border between Sierra Leone and Liberia is in Mendekorma, Liberia or Baeldu, Sierra Leone. In the past, one could see only the Liberian customs post in that location.

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