Judging by the actions taking by the government, through the Sierra Leone Police in the arrest of the Acting Publicity Secretary of the APC, Sidi Yaya Tunis, for simply saying that his party will employ level 3 tactics, which is mobilize their supports and Sierra Leoneans to vote en mass against the SLPP government in 2023, it is clear that panic of losing the 2023 elections has gripped the party.
Many who listened to the interview of the Acting Publicity Secretary of the APC on Radio Democracy are of the view that the young man was unlawfully arrested and detained for simply giving his opinion and that of his party that of his party, that the SLPP government will be removed in 2023 elections, especially as hardship continue to ravage the country and the absence the sign of relief.
It goes without saying that the current economic climate has got many Sierra Leoneans revisiting their choice of Bio as President, as the state of the economy, that drove many to vote against the APC, has rather gone from bad to worse, with the prices of commodities skyrocketing on a daily basic and the inability of the average man to put food on the table for his family on a daily basis.
What is intriguing is the fact that a lot of money from donors and revenue generated by the NRA and other institutions, have all had no impact on the life of an ordinary man. This view was amplified by the regular market price index released by the NGC, which has shown a clear and worrying increase in the cost of food stuff in country and how the salary of the ordinary man is grossly inadequate to put food on the table for his family. President Bio had promised to make the ‘gron wet’ soon, but that is still a pipe dream as the economy has gone mad and changing of the Finance Minister has made no difference.
According to The Time SL Newspaper, the arrest of Sidi Tunis has been described as an unwise decision, especially as President Bio has recently been made Chair of the APRM, and as such, international attention will be heightened over his governance stance on many issues, including violations of Human Rights, arbitrary arrests, freedom of expression and the right to hold an opinion contrary to that of the government etc. According to Umaru Fofanah, Sidi Tunis was seen barefooted; wearing a Manchester United Jersey in the police custody, which is a violation of his right, as he was invited to explain his statement on radio, which they interpreted as incitement.
Unfortunately, the ingredients constituting incitement were not met. Was it a ploy to intimidate the opposition, especially as the arrested man is the Acting Publicity Secretary of the main opposition party, the APC? will this not augur negatively on the Chair of the APRM, a newly bestowed position on His Excellency? What should be remembered is that when a country has been bestowed with the position of Chair of APRM, the government is being monitored by all parties in the APRM to ensure that the country maintains their stance on good governance, after all that is the objective of this program.