Who is APC’s Next Flag Bearer?
Foh, Kamara, Sisay, Koroma, Khan, Mansaray or Marah?
President Ernest Bai Koroma now has less than a year in office and I guess he does not plan to run a third term.
If the President decides to follow democratic principles and not vie for a third term, then the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) party will be faced with the herculean task of choosing a suitable flag bearer that will lead the party in the coming 2018 elections.
knowing president Koroma to be a clever politician whose generosity is not a secret, I am sure, if democracy would have allowed him, he would have become the next flag bearer for the party for the third term, but I have never heard the president publicly declaring his intention to run a third term and I am sure he has discouraged the idea of third term propagated by his fanatic supporters, so, if president Koroma decides to honourably leave office at the end of his tenure, who will succeed him as flag bearer of the party for 2018,his Vice –president, Victor Bockarie Foe? or will it be the legal luminary, Joseph Kamara, or the business tycoon, John Sisay, or the resigned Bank Governor, Kelfala Marah, or the sacked Works Minister, Alimamy Petito Koroma or the current Mineral Resources Minister, Minkailu Mansaray or the current Adviser to President, Alpha Khan.
These are the names that have so far been featuring for APC’s next flag bearership.
I do not know whether the APC constitution provides that the Vice- president should succeed the president as flag bearer but if that is the case, then all the other intending flag bearer aspirants are wasting their precious time and resources as Foe will surely be the next flag bearer.
It is widely-known that Victor Foh is one of the most loyal members of the APC as he has never forsaken the party even in worst of circumstances.
Even when he was sentenced to death by the then Tejan Kabba -led Sierra Leone Peoples party (SLPP) government and almost went to the gallows, he did not abandon the party.
He has served the party diligently as Secretary-General and as Ambassador to China before becoming Vice-President but many tribalists within the party are with the view that since Foh is a Mende hailing from the south, the APC will never dare to give the highest position in the party to a Mende man.
There are others in the party who believe that it will be wise for the party to give the flag bearer position to Victor Foh so that he can use his south and Mende background to divide the votes of the SLPP. They are of the strong view that giving the flag bearer position to Foh will break the long standing myth that APC is a Temne-Limba party.
What will Foh have to tell his people if he does not get the flag bearer position after suffering so much for the party and after rising to a position very close to flag bearer? If Victor Foh is denied the flag bearer position, will the Mende people and other tribes in the South-East not rightly conclude that the APC is, indeed, a Temne-Limba based party that can never give the highest position in the party to a Mende man no matter what sacrifices such a Mende man has done for the party?
Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara is a young, charismatic and highly educated man who is a legal luminary. He has held very high and significant positions in Sierra Leone the two recent being the Commissioner-General of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and now Attorney- General and Minister of Justice.
Needless to say that he is qualified to become President of this country. He did marvelous job at the ACC where he left remarkable legacies.
During his tenure as Justice Minister, he has put life into the Legal Aid Board and ensured the recruitment of more Magistrates and Judges to enhance speedy justice delivery.
He has served as the President of the Sierra Leone Bar Association and won the prestigious award of Order of the Rokel bestowed upon him by no lesser a person than President Koroma.
He has worked as Prosecutor for the Special Court for Sierra Leone where her excelled.
He is well known as a very diligent worker who is the first to go to his office and the last to leave there. Is such a man not a presidential material? Of course, he is.
John Bonnoh Sisay is, of course, a stinking rich Sierra Leonean who grew up in England and has well managed one of the biggest mining companies in Sierra Leone, Sierra Rutile.
He is so westernized that he finds it difficult to even speak krio properly.
It is no longer a secret that he has a very close relationship with President Koroma, a situation that may militate against his political career as many political critics keep saying that president Koroma wants to establish a dynasty by making his relative flag bearer.
Besides, Bonnoh Sisay has never won a single election in this country, so his political popularity is questionable.
Kelfala Marah is a very lucky man who came from the blues and became Chief of Staff and later appointed Finance Minister and then Bank Governor.
He has resigned his position as Bank Governor for the APC flag bearer position.
He started gaining popularity when he was Chief of Staff, a position which he handled very well and that might have enthused President Koroma to appoint him as Finance Minister.
But when he became finance Minister, his popularity began to dwindle when the national economy started to take a downward trend and there would have been no need for President Koroma to appoint a new Finance Minister if he had done well as Finance Minister.
But does Kelfala Marah hail from Kono or Koinadugu? He seems to have identity problem.
Besides, his political unpopularity clearly manifested itself when the APC woefully lost many votes in Sama- Bendugu right under his nose.
Alimamy Petito Koroma
Is this not the Alimamy Petito Koroma under whose administration the Council of Churches (CCSL) collapsed?
From Trade Minister, Petito was appointed Works Minister but the thousands of potholes then plaguing the country prompted the civil society to advocate for his dismissal. And, indeed, he was fired along with the then Director-General of the Sierra Leone Roads Authority (SLRA), Munda Rogers.
Even in his home town, Mambolo, Petito is not loved by many because he could not rehabilitate the Mambolo road when he was Works Minister. Can such a man lead APC to victory if made flagbearer? Or is he a Presidential material?
Alpha Khan is an orator who can thrill any crowd with his brilliant speeches, but that is not all it takes to lead a party to victory.
An intending flagbearer aspirant must have a political base and a large following. Does Khan have such qualities? I doubt it.
Was this not the Alpha Khan who was involved in the Hajj pilgrimage scam and was almost killed in Nigeria?
If he was the man, then he does not have the requisite integrity to become the APC flagbearer.
Minkailu Mansaray is the Deputy Chairman of APC and Minister of Mineral Resources.
.He seems to be popular only within the party. I doubt his popularity outside the party.
He is yet to create any positive impact on the Mineral Resources Ministry as it is during his tenure that Mines Monitors have gone for months without pay. I also doubt his political ability to lead APC to victory as he does not seem to have an impressive political career.
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