Some months back, the Managing Editor of the Standard Times newspaper Philip Neville (photo)Â and I gave evidence before the Independent Media Commission (IMC). Among other things, Neville had alleged that I seduced my own sister from her husband and then had a child with her whom I named Sama. I had accused him of being an inveterate liar, one who forged documents and photographs, like superimposing Sylvia Blydenâ€™s head on the naked body of a woman and positioned her to look lasciviously into Foday Sankoh the RUF leaderâ€™s eyes. In addition, he had doctored a group photograph in such a way as to bring former President Tejan-Kabbah together with his (Nevilleâ€™s) friend Mohamed Wanza as if the two were having a tÃªte-Ã -tÃªte. That the IMC had found him guilty forging documents purporting to come from an SLPP task force. That he had also given the former President false information about a proposed plan to make the country ungovernable which, if the former President had acted on would have given rise to disaffection within the community. Neville declared that he and the former President were close friends until I, Dr. Banya threw a wedge between them. He had told the commission that doctoring photographs was a journalistic technique, which Dr. Banya not being a journalist did not understand.
This same Philip Neville has now come out with a bogus story in his Standard Times newspaper that could have only one purpose and that is to discredit the former President. In the article titled â€œWHEN ROGUES FALL APARTâ€¦â€ he states correctly that the former President and Dr. Fadlu-Deen had been very close friends for long time. That they had conducted some dubious business deals together while the former President was in power, which is not correct. He alleges that the two friends had now fallen out because the former President had attempted to swindle Dr. Fadlu-Deen in a matter concerning the ownership of a joint property.
When I spoke separately to the two men, they sounded quite amused at Nevilleâ€™s allegation about a quarrel between them, let alone one involving property necessitating the services of solicitors. Neville has told this diabolic lie because he believes that it was former President Tejan-Kabbah who has been feeding information to a newspaper editor in order to destroy the character and reputation of a certain business man for whom Neville would appear to be a Public Relations adviser. He portrays the former President in such a way that no one would want to shake hands with him or befriend him. As usual, he backs his lies with alleged statements from anonymous members of the SLPP including members of its executive who had now vowed to have nothing to do with such a corrupt and covetous person like Tejan-Kabbah. Â Would any honest citizen, a real gentleman behave so shamelessly without even batting an eyelid as in the Libyan rice affair? Yet Neville continues to nurture ambitions of heading the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ).
The latest episode in the adventures of Sierra Leoneâ€™s self-proclaimed foremost journalist is the saga concerning the Sierra Leone Brewery in which our ventriloquist has produced sealed bottles of contaminated Star beer, one of them containing a condom and the other a used packet of pegapak alcohol. Well, Mr. Neville is prepared to convince a court and perhaps a jury as well that in this day and age, with the current production technique, bottles containing solid material would escape the electronic bottling eye of the brewery. I for one look forward to that day when I shall make an unreserved apology to our friend for casting doubt on his integrity.
Until then I will continue to shout that he is a dangerous man simply because I have been a victim of his character assassination. It would be interesting to probe the mind of people like Philip Neville â€¦
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