By Julius Johnson……
Mayor of Freetown, Yvonne Aki Sawyer, who was elected under the symbol of the main opposition All Peoples Congress (APC) and through the signing of her nomination papers by Former President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma as Chairman/Leader of APC, has described both Koroma and the APC regime he led as having been a “kleptocracy”. She asserted this in a piece she shared on 19th July 2021 through social media from her holidays in London.
The meaning of a “kleptocracy” according to Oxford Dictionary is “a government in which the leaders use their power to steal money and resources from the country that they rule”.
Koroma had been at loggerheads with another female APC politician Dr. Sylvia Olayinka Blyden for several months now over intra-party differences. It was during a malicious attack on Blyden by Aki Sawyer in which the Mayor said Blyden was fighting for “relevance” in APC party that the Mayor referenced Koroma and APC as kleptocratic entities; with Blyden accused of having served the allegedly thieving Koroma and APC kleptocrats as what Yvonne Aki Sawyer called their “propaganda-in-chief”.
However, it is a fact that over ten years ago, under the allegedly “kleptocratic” Ernest Koroma and APC, a London-based company of the same Yvonne Aki Sawyer and her husband Keith Aki Sawyer, benefited from a very controversial deal with Sierra Leone Government NASSIT pensioners funds. The company was called IDEAS-UK.
The deal was to transform historic Cape Sierra Hotel to a Hilton branded hotel. Over ten years later, NASSIT, from which poor pensioners funds were used to secure the lease, is yet to yield a single profit from the business dealing with the Aki Sawyerr family’s company.
Of note is that Dr. Blyden has threatened to drag Mayor Yvonne Aki Sawyerr to court on a strong civil libel summons based on other claims shared by the Mayor that Blyden was an RUF, an AFRC and an SLPP “propagandist in chief”.
According to Blyden, the Mayor has been fighting her since she was Minister of Social Welfare but this time, she will give the Mayor a very strong court case to go and prove her “malicious, fraudulent and bogus claims”.
Associates of Ernest Bai Koroma are however saying the Mayor inadvertently insulted Koroma as Former President. They say the Mayor never meant to call Koroma as a kleptocrat but that she had only meant to attack Sylvia Olayinka Blyden who is her colleague female politician.
☆☆☆This is a developing story and it will continue to get coverage inside Awareness Times Newspaper.
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