Reports coming from Kenema city state that scores of youths have been rounded up by the police and taken to the Tongo Police Division.
Those rounded up are allegedly supporters of the All People’s Congress (APC) and the People’s Movement for Democratic Change (PMDC) who reportedly armed themselves with sticks, knives and other missiles and went into a bush at Weima and stopped all gold and diamond mining activities there.
People have been reportedly mining gold clandestinely in this bush for some time now until when it became known that the bush was a gold spot but that it was unlicensed.
The matter then went to higher quarters and mining in the bush and the entire township was then immediately stopped.
When this reporter paid a visit to Weima last week the paramount chief of Lower Bambara chiefdom, PC Alimamy Farma, told Awoko that small groups of residents were creating problems. He explained that at one time the same group went into a bush and put a red flag saying that it now belonged to the APC.
He said he had to intervene, and made it clear to all that the bush belonged to some people and that those who wanted to mine in it should make the necessary arrangement with the owners and then settle the government’s side of the bargain and then kick off with his/her mining activity.
The regional crimes officer at the Kenema Police Division, Samuel Sanie Sesay, told this writer that they had deployed police personnel in the town to prevent further conflict and that a meeting was scheduled for last Sunday at Weima to resolve the problem.
During last Sunday’s meeting the APC regional chairman, Prince Kamara, told everyone that the APC government would not encourage and support anyone who wanted to disturb citizens’ peace in any part of the country.
He said, “those who are hiding themselves under the APC and go on causing problems will be dealt with according to the law”.
The APC regional chairman further told the audience that, “the APC government is for all Sierra Leoneans and not for a particular tribe or group of people,” and therefore warned everyone to desist from any negative action that would disturb the people and peace of the nation. Mr Kamara said, “there is no special bush for APC and those who want to mine should do so by using the appropriate channel”.
The meeting ended with everyone present pledging to maintain peace and order in that part of the country.