National Publicity Secretary of the Sierra Leone Peoples’ Party,(SLPP) Hon. Musa Tamba Sam in an interview with Awoko has condemned the act by police on its Headquarters on the 19- 20th of this month.
Hon. Tamba Sam explained that on the evening of the 19th June, a contingent of police personnel (OSD) of which some were armed with weapons and crow bars stormed the party office.
He said on arrival, they went straight to the back of the party office were there where some makeshift booths, and started demolishing the structures without any notice from party officials and supporters present at that time.
With this ugly situation, some of the youths were angered and tried to intervene to stop the police from their actions.
To the surprise of other youths, some of the other officers who accompanied the OSD team, physically manhandled the youth, (name withheld) who by then had been stripped naked by the officers.
Hon. Sam explained that some of the national officers of the SLPP present including the vice-chairman, Dr. Prince Harding rushed to the scene and prevailed on the police and tried to bring back sanity to the party Headquarters which was already in pandemonium,(OSD and Youths of the party).
The SLPP Publicity secretary maintained that the police intimidation continued on to 20th of June when the police launched another attack on the party office, despite the main entrance to the party office was closed. He said they forcefully let themselves into the premise and continued their demolition exercise, which was left undone the previous day.
Those who tried to resist were beaten, some were injured while others were arrested, including the national trustee west of the party, who was brave enough to confront the officers as to who gave orders to demolish the makeshift structures at the back of the office.
Hon. Tamba Sam said the police replied that they received complaint from the Chairman of the party, Chief Sumano Kapen, that he was prevented from entering his office by some youths who are residing at the back of the party on makeshift structures to cause mischief and unrest.
Questioned as to what has been done to settle the impasse, the publicity secretary noted that talks were on-going between the national executive of the party and the police administration to bring sanity in order not to further the already sour relationship between the party and the police.
This reporter went to the central police station to have the side of the police of operations, but was unable to talk to him.
At the Political Parties Registration Commission, Awoko was informed by the chairman of the commission, Hon. Justice Tolla- Thompson that the commission has the authority to give penalty to political parties that continue to have intra-party disputes, especially the main opposition which has for a long time now been saddled with too many disputes.
By Ade Campbell
Monday June 23, 2014