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Sierra Leone News: Refusing to think outside the Box

Just as gold must pass through fire for it to be pure, so human beings also go through many difficulties in order for them to achieve their goals in life. In this modern world, one can hardly leave anything to chance. So much evidence is stressed these days for whatever we say or do. This sends my mind back to an incident a long time ago: a guy swallowed a cheque he was accused of forging. That was the end of the case because there was no evidence to ascertain his culpability.
If you are travelling through the Wellington- Masiaka little done Toll Road, you will definitely get fed up with the Check point situation at Mile 38 otherwise known as Magonthoso. There your vehicle stops and all the passengers go down and take the long walk to the other end of theat village and board again. Why this is done, no one knows. Well some say to ensure the wares sold there are bought! Bullshit! With the Ebola era long posted behind us, one wonders why the security personnel invent new forms of passenger suffering. Giving the terrible overloading condition of our public transportation commuters do not need any further humbug.
We Sierra Leoneans have a long way to go to match the discipline and development orientation of our sister West African countries. Even small snakelike Gambia is far ahead. They say that if you want something you have never had before, you have to do what you have never done before. You cannot definitely solve a problem by using the strategies that created it in the first place.
Ghanaians decided to abandon their kind of krio and concentrate on the English language and some of their indigenous languages especially Twi. Well it is really now paying dividends. They claim that their pupils’ English language was getting very awful by the day. So now even the taxi driver on the Ghanaian roads manages to speak English. It works for them, but I do not know if it works for us out here in Sierra Leone. Time has shown us that jargons that used to be true and right, can no longer hold water. An adage like Silence means consent misleadingly can be used by those in authority to lord it over others assuming that they can think better for others that do not have the necessary voice needed for their liberation. The Creole say word nar mot nor to load nar ade. You may start to know why people, especially politicians do not mean most of what they say and that is why their people are always left frustrated. Yes it is the politician who adjusts the facts to fit his purpose. All this happen because of the gullibility of the people they claim to represent. They are people who either do not look where they are going or do not go where they are looking.
When Ebola struck in 2014, we continued to sing our poverty song much more loudly. We can manage being illiterate but we definitely can’t go on being hungry for almost everything. During the elections campaigns many guys were masquerading and drinking alcohol along the streets and getting drunk and playing the nuisance with impunity. Why? If we say we are poor and starving, can drunkenness be our daily habits? When next you visit the Family Support Units of the Salone Police, spend an hour there and listen to the types of cases. Most of them are fighting occasioning bodily harm. Although we need to recognize that people have to exhibit individual differences, yet there are limitations to which people can deviate from the mean. Definitely we cannot all be the same otherwise life will be awful dull. Don’t you feel so? Just get all the controversial guys and send them to their own country and you see how drab life really is. Do not just try to be holier than the Pope, my Guy.
Today most people take delight in been hypocritical and play the sycophantic game and in the process commit the sin of omission. These cause more harm than good. But of course these are the good guys. Really as they say we do not need to worry about what we cannot change. Yes change! Everybody wants some change to occur. The politician says so and the development worker also want changes in people’s lives. While one relies on playing on the intelligence and gullibility of people, the other one tries to protect the dignity of people and build their capacities to be able to advocate, making things go right with them. Because we do not accept that we are different, our expectations sometimes are never met.
A lot of people say that youth live on hope and the old on remembrance. Oh yes hope is what keeps all of us going day from day One problem is that the laws are hardly invoked. We definitely learned some hard lessons during the last elections, including NEC. To forestall violent events we did accommodate varying views just so as to have all on board. Incidentally this is what democracy is all about. The minority having their say, but the majority having their way. After elections a lot of people will continue to tell you that politics is over, which is one big crazy rubbish. Perhaps what they mean is that elections are over. What I know is that we live with politics all our lives.
We play it everywhere; of course I do not mean here your partisan politics. Do we ever really care for our compatriots in far away depraved communities who do not or will never enjoy even a tenth of what we enjoy in the cities? Now with Ebola, you can imagine. You see, in life there is always a way out. There is no difficulty that cannot be surmounted. Definitely if we cross the river in groups, the crocodiles won’t eat us. Our disagreements should be managed such that we all meet our common goal.
The youths are to stay conscious and not be swayed here and there like a pendulum because of current challenges. We need to think that what touches any of our compatriots anywhere touches us. We go through pains at times because we played the complacence, being afraid of speaking out. So we have to endure the wrought of oppressors. We are sometimes patronised and placated. Like they say you can hide the baby but you cannot hide the cry of the baby.
Let us stop behaving like the pregnant woman in some depraved community having swollen feet thinks that she is going to have a male child. When you consider that majority of our urban poor live in slums, then you know how serious this thing called poverty is.
By Ben CAMBAYMA
Tuesday March 06, 2018.

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