The main opposition party the All People’s Congress (APC) yesterday announced its Presidential running mate amidst widespread speculation.
The APC leader and Presidential candidate Ernest Bai Koroma presented Samuel Sam-Sumana as his running mate to journalists and party faithfulls late Wednesday afternoon at his party headquarters.
The red and white clad crowd exploded into bedlam in the absolutely packed room with Sam-Sumana being practically bundled out to safety.
Followers rushed through the doors after him, shouting, pushing and scuffling.
“As I now stand here to name this person, I appeal to everybody in the APC and particularly those who have been nursing ambition to be selected as my running mate, to cooperate with me and my running mate so that victory will be ours come Aug. 11, 2007,” Ernest Koroma said just before his announcement.
The Leader maintained that after the broad consultations with the rank and file of the APC party, and with the full support and in full agreement with the elders of the party and the National Advisory Committee (NAC), “I have finally come to a decision to appoint one of our memberships to be my running mate.”
Koroma who was speaking in a joyous mood noted “I now make public that I have decided on no other person other than the young, dynamic, and committed party member. This choice is done in the best interest of tribal, religious and many other considerations.”
Sam-Sumana, 45, a native of the Kono District in the eastern province is currently the CEO of Aries Rehabilitation Construction and Supplies and the former Vice Chairman of the Kono-Union chapter in Minnesota, U.S.A. According to an APC press release he frequented the Kono and Kenema districts during the height of the civil war while based in America, forging good relations with local chiefdom authorities, during which times he worked on constructing and repairing roads in the regions.
According to the APC, Sam-Sumana was also involved in the diamond industry in the mining and buying sectors and has a Bachelor of Science degree in management.
Before announcing the nomination APC spokesman Alpha Kanu took several potshots at President Kabbah regarding the recent Ghadaffi-rice controversy demanding to know why parliament wasn’t notified, what the quantity received was and what happened to the capital.
Mr Sam- Sumana is a member of the five man committee of the party.
“I call on everyone to work together for the party,” said Sam-Sumana during a brief interview with Awoko following his nomination.
“We should all come together and take the party to victory. I feel excited to be chosen.”
He is on record to be the first Kono indigene to be nominated as running mate in Sierra Leone’s political history.
Today is the Presidential nomination for the APC.