Archive for Sierra Leone
As efforts to contain the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) continue to gain momentum and urgency, the Embassy of Sierra Leone in the Federal Republic of Germany has assembled compatriots and friends of Sierra Leone to map out strategies on how they could contribute to the fight against the deadly virus. With the death toll rising, Sierra Leoneans in Germany started mobilising resources, medical supplies and protective gears which could be used by medical workers and the general public in Sierra Leone.
The United States said it had ordered family members at the U.S. Embassy in Freetown, Sierra Leone to depart because of limitations on regular medical care as a result of the Ebola outbreak. “The Embassy recommended this step out of an abundance of caution, following the determination by the Department’s Medical Office that there is a lack of options for routine health care services at major medical facilities due to the Ebola outbreak,” the State Department said in a statement.
The gathering of Sierra Leone nationals living in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at the Chancery of the Sierra Leone Embassy in Riyadh to offer yet another session of supplications for the late Head of Chancery. Mr. Ibrahim S. Yilla died in a Riyadh hospital after a brief illness on Saturday, 10th November, 2012. Although the Sierra Leone community in Saudi Arabia, led by the collaborative efforts of the Sierra Leone Embassy and the Sierra Leone National’s Union, had earlier played a significant role in the funeral arrangements that culminated in the repatriation of the late career-diplomat’s body to Sierra Leone and the eventual burial at his home town of Kambia, this time however, the presence of Ambassador Wusu B. Munu and the new Head of Chancery, Mr. Umaru Dura – both of whom had just jet in from Sierra Leone – as well as that of the late man’s wife, Mrs. Jeneba Yilla and other family members, added more weight and clout to the huge attendance.
Open letter of plea from concerned Sierra Leonean citizens in the Netherlands to J B Dauda, Minister of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation, Freetown, Sierra Leone. “We the concerned Sierra Leoneans in the Kingdom of The Netherlands, on behalf of all the Sierra Leoneans in The Netherlands, want to let you know that we are 100% behind Madam Sabainya Lamboi-Bandamoy, the Honorary Consul General for The Republic of Sierra Leone to the Kingdom of The Netherlands. Since Her Excellency Madam Sabainya Lamboi-Bandamoy assumed this post, we the Sierra Leoneans of all tribal and political backgrounds have benefited tremendously from the services her office provides for us in The Netherlands. Our suffering in The Netherlands in terms of consular services, have greatly been reduced. Thanks to her and her staff. We no longer want to go to Sierra Leone Embassy, Brussels, due to so many reasons that majority of the Sierra Leoneans have been experiencing over the years. It is very difficult and dangerous for we the Sierra Leoneans here in The Netherlands to go to the Sierra Leone Embassy in Brussels for consular services. A lot of us sometimes even get arrested going to Brussels, as many of us do not have our stay, or valid papers to make such a journey.”
Government recently introduced a new policy intended to stop diplomats overstaying and to prevent political interferences when they are recalled after serving four years inSierra Leone’s Missions around the world. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has drawn up guidance and new rules for all diplomatic appointments that clearly states that the appointment is for four years and that the appointee must be ready to return home on completion of his or her term. Mrs. Ebun Jusu, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said in the past, there was no laid-down policy but “an understanding” that when officers are sent abroad, it is initially for four years but over the years this understanding has been ignored. Explaining the reason behind this new policy, she said, “Whenever people take up jobs at the Foreign Ministry, their ultimate dream is to go abroad on appointment, unfortunately however, we know people go abroad and tend to establish links; they possibly get married, have children, the children start schooling and they buy a house and suddenly they do not want to come back home, but they should remember that there are others who are also entitled to the same jobs abroad.”
Sierra Leone President Ernest Koroma summoned US ambassador Michael Owen to discuss a leaked diplomatic cable accusing him of protecting an ally implicated in a massive cocaine bust. A presidential aide said the ambassador was on a mission inside the country when he was asked to return to the capital “for a meeting with the President, but no time has been fixed”. A US embassy cable published by WikiLeaks this week said President Koroma “directly ordered the police not to arrest, detain or charge” then minister of Transport and Aviation, Kemoh Sesay, implicated in the trafficking of 600 kilos of cocaine. In July 2008, police discovered the cocaine in an aircraft bearing a fake Red Cross emblem at Freetown’s international Lungi airport, which they said had come from Venezuela, a major source of cocaine shipments destined for Europe. It was a record bust for Sierra Leone. A relative of the former minister, Mohamed Sesay, was one of the key suspects, and the minister was relieved of his duties at the time, which government said was taken “to facilitate the investigation”. Mohamed, who is currently serving a five-year jail term for his involvement in the cocaine saga, was a key financier of the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) party during the 2007 elections. The US cable said President Koroma’s protection of Kemoh Sesay “runs counter to public and private statements, which have said he will hold anyone connected to the cocaine bust accountable, regardless of their connections.”