Three opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) members of Parliament who claimed to have been in Kono over the weekend when the SLPP was attacked have explained their ordeals.
The Deputy minority leader of the SLPP Hon Emmanuel Tommy who is from Kono explained that before they went to Kono with former Vice President Solomon Berewa to launch their campaign for the local council elections they had to check their calendar set up by the Political Parties Registration Commission and NEC to know when political parties are to campaign.
He explained that they went to Bo on Friday and Kenema on Saturday to launch their campaigns which he said was very peaceful and fantastic.
He said “I traveled on Saturday to Kono to put arrangements in place for the arrival of the former Vice President and the SLPP entourage on Sunday and Monday which was our own day to campaign. The Vice President and his entourage met me at Bumpe junction where we processed to Koidu and the first incidence that took place was when a young man stabbed a lady with a screw driver at the junction of Tankoro road. We continued through Konomani street and by the time we approached a junction I saw Sahr John Yambasu dressed in brown gown and I also saw Joshua the former accountant in the Ministry of Education now Principal Accountant in the Ministry of Health standing at the junction monitoring our events and the sooner they saw me, they entered in to a white tinted Toyota land cruiser”.
Hon Tommy also alleged that after they had taken lunch at his residence and were about to witness the meeting, they received intelligence that some APC boys were mobilizing to disrupt their meeting.
He said when they converged at the Tankoro Court Barray that stones were pelted on them from all angles.
He continued that whilst they were in the barray a van loaded with task force youths hit one SLPP supporter named Peggy and went away.
Following that he continued “there was an attack on our Chairman in Kono almost in a form of an assassination attempt. This happened at 5.5 and he was very fortunate to have escaped that.
There was also an attack on one of my councilors in my constituency Mrs Mary Nyandebo at her house and people were wounded and some also went in a pick-van to my house but I was fortunate”.
Mr Tommy disclosed that on their way out of Kono with the former Vice President, there were lots of words thrown on them.
He called on the President to know that the people of Kono are not safe and there is no protection for them.
Hon Phillip Tondoneh who also claimed he was part of the entourage that welcomed the former Vice President to Kono explained similar incidences of attacks on the SLPP supporters.
“The current political system in Kono is really supported by our local chiefs and some chiefs have been calling on our candidates to back down at this material time. In fact the intelligence we got was that the SLPP should not be allowed to campaign in Kono and if these situations are not dealt with I am afraid Kono is sitting on a time bomb” he said.
Hon Foday Rado Yokie who said he too followed the former Vice President from Bo said the APC should not take their intelligence as a weakness as they do not believe in the democracy of thuggery
He remarked that because the Vice President Sam Sumana was in Kono and not more than 100 people were there to welcome him, the APC went berserk when thousands went out not only to welcome the former Vice President but to show their solidarity and support.
By Ishmael Bayoh