When Violence Rears Its Ugly Head!
The issue of violence has been a thorn in the flesh of peaceful co-existence in the country. There have been countless incidents of violence resulting in the massive destruction of property, loss of life and bloodshed, most times blamed on the young people.
It would appear that violence has become part of the Sierra Leonean culture, defying sweet sounding promises and well-crafted policies and projects by successive governments to tackle the menace of violence by the youth; the incidence continues persistently, dashing all hope to the ground.
If it is not a strike action by students protesting some draconian government policy, it is violence ignited by supporters of opposing political parties or some frustrated persons seeking solution to their dire lifestyle by calling the attention of the authorities in a rather abnormal manner.
Charged with the responsibility to maintain law and order, the police have sometimes, if not most times responded in a high-handed fashion, prompting public castigation and blame of being unprofessional. There have been several instances in which the police discharge live rounds instead of teargas resulting in the death and arrests of sometimes innocent persons.
In recent times, violence has erupted in different parts of the country, including post-election violence, bye-election violence, opposition party protests, prison violence and violence sparked by residents of the regional headquarter town of Makeni. All these incidents of violence were characterized by bloodshed, loss of life and destruction of property.
Just last week, two incidents of violence rocked the city center by angry youth from the ruling Sierra Leone Peoples Party, who went on the rampage against peaceful citizens.
We consider these ugly incidents as a bad signal for peace. We therefore strongly urge the powers that be to accelerate efforts to providing durable and workable solution to the problem of violence.
We also want to call on all Sierra Leoneans in an out of the country to desist from making pronouncements and or carrying out acts of violence in the society, in order to make way for development and peaceful co-existence.
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