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The Kissi will not vote for APC

The Kissi will not vote for APC

My fellow countrymen:   It hasn’t been that long since our history taught us that a brutal rebel force the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) of Sierra Leone, armored and controlled by Charles G. Taylor, then the Liberian warlord during Sierra Leone’s 1991-2002 civil war led to the deaths of some 200,000 people. The RUF rebel force engaged in vicious and horrendous crimes as they pillaged, killed, raped, forced children to fight, and hacked off hands to terrorize civilians of Kissi and other tribes in Sierra Leone. (Photo:  Michael F Kallon, author)

Bands of disgruntled Sierra Leoneans headed this front rebel movement, which started in the 1970s when, with Foday Sankoh, a northerner renowned for atrocities and for causing untold human suffering, they hated the good-for-nothing APC government in Sierra Leone at that time. Sankoh, a corporal and later a TV cameraman before he was sacked for politically motivated actions in the country, was arrested and imprisoned briefly by Siaka P. Steven’s regime.

APC was in power for decades and all we saw in Sierra Leone were vicious forms of robberies. This government had no respect for human rights; they supported the total disrespect of Sierra Leoneans. They indulged in cannibalism and every audacious form of hoodlum activity even to this day.

A few people in the APC feel that they own the country and that they can nominate cronies to positions where they steal the riches in the country and blame those who are not members of their tribe. The entire country voted for Koroma, but he has disappointed us. Most of his nominations are people from the north, his cronies, without respecting the basic rights of other tribes in the country. I have been angry these days over the attitude of any government in Sierra Leone for disrespecting the rights of the Kissi, who have not had a son or daughter nominated by any government to a full ministerial position in Sierra Leone since it became independent in 1961. Our people have lived in the Stone Age. When the war came, every tribe suffered in Sierra Leone, for war is like rain; it pours on every house in the land.

The history of the APC is the history of the Kissi.  During the 1967 civil war and the riots that followed for years between the APC and the SLPP, it was in Kissi Land that Siaka Stevens found refuge, hiding like a chicken in the Foryoh compound. I saw him there on many occasions. He promised to build Kissi land, but we have been ignored, abandoned, and politically disenfranchised.  It seems that just because we are smaller in population, we should be marginalized. The first ingratitude that S.I. Koroma of the APC showed us was to send truckloads of thugs to destroy the Kailahun District. Unfortunately the trucks and thugs disappeared between Pedembu and Kailahun. For up to this day, no one can tell anyone what exactly happened to those mercenaries and their APC trucks.


Most Sierra Leoneans voted for Koroma thinking that he was going to dismantle the old APC, and try to unite the country, but we continue to see is that the same Ecutey cult being propagated in the country. No one would have ever imagined that Siaka Stevens’ son would become an ambassador in the United States, considering the history of Siaka Stevens and his behavior in Sierra Leone.


Siaka Stevens destroyed what was once a vibrant economy in Sierra Leone, He enslaved our people at the Mafanta prisons, and many who were taken there against their will were chiefs and very responsible people in the chiefdoms in our country.  Even my late uncle, Chief Sahr Foryoh of Koindu and his friend, Ceedee Mohamed, an Arab who lived for many years in Koindu, were among the chiefs who were taken and disgraced in the Mafanta prisons.  Imagine, it was Chief Sahr Foryoh that Siaka Stevens crawled to in the early morning hours in 1967 to hide him from his political opponents, or he would have been killed. Nevertheless, Siaka Stevens imprisoned him.

Siaka Stevens killed some prominent and historical figures in our country just to satisfy his own political agenda. He stole the “Star of Sierra Leone” and was never brought to justice for the robberies, murders, and political victimization of those he considered his enemies. Siaka Stevens alone made the arrangement to remove the trains and the railway system from Sierra Leone, a cheaper form of transportation for the poor, and put the money into his pocket. Can any human being with common sense make such a thief and cannibal’s son the ambassador in the world’s richest nation? It is the same old APC, my people.


Just after independence in 1961, our muddy roads were paved in the three Kissi Chiefdoms: Kissi Teng, Kissi Kama, and Kissi Tongi, in northeast Sierra Leone. These roads were paved due to the blessings of the late P. C. Kai Tongui of Buedu, one of most powerful Kissi chiefs in Sierra Leone. Kai Tongui made it possible for the construction of the road that linked Liberia and Sierra Leone, making it possible for the Kissi from those countries to visit and do business. Like Kai Lundu before him, he fought to save Sierra Leone; Kai Lundo especially fought many wars in Liberia and some parts of Guinea just to help establish the borders of Sierra Leone as we see them today. Also, Gbekah Kondo or Kondo Gbekah, the warrior and forebear of the Foryoh family, founded Koindu.

Since then, our Kissi area has returned to the Stone Age. No clinics, no hospitals, not even pipe-borne water came to Koindu in the 1980s (imagine, since 1961, not long before civil war came). Yet, the fertile land in Kissi chiefdoms supplied fresh fruits, rice,  plantains, and other edibles that were sold in Koindu our once International Market town and transported them on the muddy, dangerous roads to the capital cities of Freetown in Sierra Leone and also to Monrovia, Liberia.  Our area also supplied Freetown with cash crops, like coffee and cacao. We saw our people die of illnesses that could have been cured if not for the absence of modernized clinics. We saw our people being victimized by the police and the politicians of old, simply because they did not have anyone to stand up for them.

Today things have changed. We are the true sons and daughters of the Kissi, and we are warriors. We would fight for recognition, if that should be necessary. We have PhD and Masters Degree holders and more; that shouldn’t prevent any government from recognizing our kinsmen and kinswomen for government positions in Sierra Leone.


The Yenga issue has never been resolved, because the government in Freetown still believes that the Kissi that should be enslaved by the Guineans. How can any government of any nation allow armed bandits to cross a river (the Makona River) to usurp land on the soil of their own country? This happens only in the country of sick men and women who care only for what they put in their own bellies. When I told the SLPP that we the Kissi were going to fight for Yenga, they thought it was a bluff, and Kabba hastily made arrangements with the Guineans. To this day, Yenga is still with those barbarians. When the Guineans invaded Yenga, they killed many of our kinsmen and kinswomen. They also went inland and captured most of our villages. Had it not been for the chiefs and elders that stood up, the entire Kissi land in Sierra Leone would been swallowed up by Guinea.


We the Kissi will consult with our people around the world to decide if we will partake in any elections in Sierra Leone in the future. We have been abandoned, molested, abused, and politically marginalized. We want to be left alone to decide our destinies. No one should think that giving cars or expensive gifts to anyone in Kissi land will guarantee our votes in any elections in Sierra Leone. As far as I am concerned, I don’t seek any favors from anyone, but if our people (Kissi) are not respected politically, any government in Freetown will be in for some greatest surprises as time passes. If we decide to fight for our rights, so be it. We are children of warriors and great grandsons and granddaughters of Kai Lundo, Jabba, Ganawa, Gbekah Kondo Foryoh, Bandabellah, Banda Killie Fugbu, Horloh, Pusuh, and many of our forebears who were warriors in Sierra Leone. If you respect us, we will respect you; if not, then whatever happens will just have to happen.


In Sierra Leone, we have over 16 tribes, and most of them have chiefdoms. These chiefdoms should be developed; if not, it better for us to live separately, everyone ruling their own area, without encouraging any encroachment of unscrupulous politicians on others to propagate their egocentric and very selfish ambitions on others. In the past, the APC gave us Tamba Juana, whom they supported unopposed for decades and decades, but he was always considered honorable. Only God knows what kind of honorable man he was. He became a tyrant, and all educated young man and women became his archenemies. He and his henchmen drove most of the educated young men and young women to exile to Liberia where they sought better opportunities in those days. Yet, Liberia taught us that one’s country should be respected and not for foreigners to abuse like in Sierra Leone. In Liberia, we were called foreigners and there, fresh molestation ensued. They never had a porous immigration state like we have in Sierra Leone. We need a government that will strengthen our immigration structures and keep our borders safe from bandits who come to destroy our economy, and from visiting politicians who just sit in air-conditioned offices in Freetown, praying for the unscrupulous economic bandits who call themselves businessmen and businesswomen to bring impressive gifts to them.


Today, our eyes are opened, and we must fight to gain respect from any government in Sierra Leone. We are tired of being second class citizens in our own country. A Lebanese man can kill a Sierra Leonean in his own country and go free. We are a nation that has no respect for each other, and we feed like blood-sucking vultures on other marginalized tribes in the country.

We the Kissi can unite with any government in Freetown only after the status of our land in Sierra Leone has been recognized as the Kissi Bendu District. It is in this regard that I am asking all the sons and daughters of Kissi Bendu in Sierra Leone not to vote for the sake of voting. What did we get from all the decades and decades that we have voted in our country, other than to see us pushed more and more to dance to the drums of abject poverty?  I repeat: Do not vote until our Kissi Bendu Land has been recognized as a district by any government in Sierra Leone.

May God continue to bless us! Long live Sierra Leone!

By Michael Fayia Kallon

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  • You are a fool and you will ever remain to be a fool. Preaching hatred of tribalism and regionalism to gain what? nothing but stupid politics. We Sierra leoneans both home and in the diaspora has decided to forgive and forget. We are forging ahead for development and progress- (No waiting, No parking). If you think writing such articles will turn us back to our dark days, my friend you got it wrong. The Kissi people are great people with an incredible history about their sons and daughters, They are our brothers and sisters, Our mothers and fathers and are true peaceful Sierra Leoneans. I wonder what has gone wrong with you to instill hate in the minds of our people overthere in the east of our beloveth country, You cannot be bought with expensive cars for votes and so forth. look here mister man, forget about A.P.C. Let us develop our nation and be proud for your country. lonta

    21st January 2011
  • Though you claimed to know the history of the Kissi’s and also claiming to be one of us but let me ask you the following questions:
    1. Mr. Kallon where were you and the SLPP when the Kissi’s were called Grasshopper Eaters?
    2. Where were you when the Kissi’ were taken from their huts to clear roads in Kailaihun and Pendembu?
    3. During the SLPP rule in the 60s-early 70s go back and anwer this question if you are true to yourself, where there any secondary school in the three Kissi’s or Kissidom?
    Unfortunately let’s leave it as it is, now that we have known your true color. Proud sons and daugthers of Kissidom wanted to respond to this article but I told them not to bother themselves with this type of individual whose writing is not even impressive. Furthermore, his assertions are distorted and completely disorganized. Anyone with a sound mind and aware of the history of Sierra Leone and Kissidom will certainly notice that the author is infantile or senile. Perhaps he is seeking for recognition by taking up issues such as Yenga. Unfortunately he handles it badly like a real poor child who does not know how to play with toys of the rich when invited in to the home of his rich school playmate. So my brothers and sisters from Kissidom we should just forget that such a man claiming to be one of us is on planet earth or better jettison such writings from your minds

    20th January 2011

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