If you asked me, I would say His Excellency (HE) the elected Vice President (VP) Chief Alhaji Abubakarr Sidikie Sam Sumana is an icon of peace, unity, freedom, and Justice. In retrospect and by extension he represents the national motto; Unity, Freedom, and Justice. HE Alhadji Sam-Sumana was muzzled out of power through conspiracy, lies, and self-aggrandisement and is now a household name and a beacon of peace amongst political and apolitical Sierra Leoneans.
His decision not to use the barrel of the gun to avenge his unconstitutional removal is a relief for the people of Sierra Leone who had thought the worst could happen after the president, who lives and enjoys under the constitution murdered the constitution that made him president. Thanks to HE Chief Sam-Sumana for choosing peace over war to save Sierra Leone.
Whilst in office, VP Chief Sam-Sumana had massive support among members of the APC party and the citizenry under his belt to trigger another war and send the current government packing for the unforeseeable future had he chosen to do so. But not to be. Why? Well, he, a softly-spoken man, humble and friendly, despite his enormous support caught across Sierra Leone and the Diaspora, did not seek any confrontation with the powers that be.
On several occasions, he said he is a man of peace and loves his people and country. He did take the abuse, disrespect, and humiliation to allow peace to reign in his beloved country.
Chief Sumana is a hero for every peace-loving Sierra Leonean. At the worst period of his career, he stood for peace and defended the constitution at all costs. Had he allowed his reasoning to overtake his judgment at the height of the constitutional crisis, it would have been counterproductive – eminent war. But the elected VP called on his supporters to show restraints and abide by the law. That was not out of fear, but he wanted to preserve peace, unity, freedom, and justice as the national motto requires of every patriotic Sierra Leonean to make this country a safe haven.
Peace and Unity
Peace and Unity go hand in hand; the absence of one invalidates the other. Chief Sam-Sumana utilised both to prevent bloodshed in Sierra Leone as it was similar in South Sudan where the president, out of malice, unconstitutionally removed the elected VP from office which led to a civil war. As I write, South Sudan is confronted with one menace of the illegal actions of President Salva Kiir Mayardit whose evil causes unfolded carnage on South Sudanese on both sides of the political stage.
To sustain peace and unity, ensure freedom and justice in any country, the “Law Makers” must abide by the laws they themselves make. According to President Barack Obama; “No one is above the law, not even the president.” Chief Sumana is a living testimony such a quotation. He lives by and promotes the law in every sector.
Freedom comes with a price; a price not many leaders, particularly African leaders, are willing to pay for either in kind or in any form of remuneration. Chief Sam-Sumana paid for the people’s freedom with his career in the face of massive disrespect and sustained abuses. How many African leaders, having tasted power and the luxuries, can choose to walk away for the love of their country and people? Perhaps five in a million; Chief Sumana is one of them.
It is often said that “Justice must not only be seen; it must be seen to be done”. A bias judgment is sufficient to overturn a judicial decision. In the recent constitutional matter of HE Ernest Bai Koroma Vs The people of Sierra Leone (HE Chief Sam-Sumana), the corrupt Supreme Court of Sierra Leone delivered an exceedingly flawed and bias judgment in exchange for $5m without any right of appeal or judicial review. HE the elected VP showed restraint in the face of provocation and disproportionate abuse of his human rights and decided to seek redress in the ECOWAS Court. How about that?
The aforementioned may or may not be true, but what is clearly evident is that the elected VP is an icon of “Peace, Unity, Freedom, and Justice”. Though the VP had enormous power and massive support among the people of Sierra Leone and the international community at the time of his unlawful dismissal from office, he considered peace to war for the security and protection of his country and people.
The elected VP will go down in history as one of the best African leaders whose quest for peace, unity, freedom, and justice for his country and people supersedes the political power that many leaders lived to kill for or help turn their nations into killing zones.
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