APC (All People’s Congress), the party of Siaka Probyn Stevens, Sorie Ibrahim Koroma, Christian Alusine Kamara Taylor and others is today weak and helpless in Sierra Leone’s political landscape through intra-party conflicts, bribery allegations and sell-outs to the ruling party for selfish gains.

Its members especially executive officials do not see eye-to-eye on matters that affect the party particularly sustained political intimidation by government.

Instead of working together to have a coordinated response to the political threats, APC members are at each other’s throat casting big doubt about when will the party take back its glory. Six decades after its formation, main opposition, All People’s Congress (APC) seems to be losing its political ideology making it a victim of political oppression and intimidation.

The current members especially those holding key posts in the party have little knowledge about the party’s customs, traditions and values which make it survive to this day.

APC, according to the veterans, once had a vibrant Council of Elders that preached the party’s values to the young, but the coming of former President Ernest Bai Koroma, Minkailu Mansaray and others weakened the values that defined the party.

Internal struggles over the party’s leadership was the main cause of the death of the once revered traditions. The current APC Chairman, Minkailu Mansaray, one of the elders said, nearly went at logger heads with then President Koroma over the leadership of the party but with little knowledge about its ideals.

As the party faces a corrosive effect on its political culture, the veterans have appealed to the APC leadership to resuscitate the Council of Elders to educate the youth about the values the party stand for.

One of the elders who spoke to this press, Edward Koroma has intimated this press that he is not comfortable with the manner in which the party is run by the current executive particularly allegations of a sell-out of the party for pittances at a time of trials and tribulations.

According to the elders, the only way out is a formidable council that can tell true to leaders within the party and to preach ethics

and morals. “We want the Council of Elders to be a vibrant organ within the APC organogram so that the party’s ethos can be preserved,” Mansaray appealed to the executive. APC, he went on, was born of political activism to counter SLPP (Sierra Leone People’s Party)’s deceptive political propaganda during Y the dark ages.

The old APC politician made reference to steps taken by the n. party’s first President Siaka Stevens to sensitize the people of Sierra Leone in the early 1960s about Elections Before Independence Movement (EBIM) which resulted into the formation of APC “Many events took place including the arrest and detention of Siaka Stevens while Independence Day celebrations were ongoing.” Koroma looked back at history.

From immemorial, Mansaray went on, APC was not known for overlooking at societal ills especially political oppression from a ruling party, but something fishy seems to be going on thas holding the party from tough actions.

The elders are not satisfied with APC’s response to threats that they will not abide by any recommendation for a rerun or fresh election regardless of the involvement of the international community as President Julius Maada Bio is heading for 2028 or 2030 general election

Watching the current struggles of the party from a distance, the veterans are convinced that a shady deal has taken place thus weakening the party once known for speaking up about governance issues and policies. Speaking to this press, Mansaray catalogued incidents of brutal oppression against the party while the executive sits with folded arms thus rendering the people defenceless and hopeless in the eyes of many Sierra Leoneans. The elders are not satisfied with APC’s response to threats that they will not abide by any recommendation for a rerun or fresh election regardless of the involvement of the international community as President Julius Maada Bio is heading for 2028 or 2030 general election.

The 20230 factor comes into play owing to reports that the PAOPA regime is secretly interfering with the constitution to replace the five-year term constitutional clause to seven years. In a tweet, one of APC’s top lawyers, Ade Macauley recently

accused the PAOPA regime of secretly carrying out the constitutional review. APC however has failed to act despite the lawyer’s claim.

The move for no rerun election began immediately after a peace communiqué was signed by the two political parties, SLPP and APC, a move facilitated by the international community (Commonwealth, African Union and ECOWAS).

Information Minister, Chernor Bah and the Presidential Advisor, Emmanuel Gaima minced no word in condemning an election other than 2028. On the other hand, APC does not fight back with its usual strength and vigour creating a room for PAOPA to continue their pranks.

No politician of equal standing in the APC could respond to the statements of the two key SLPP politicians who frown at a rerun, with many Sierra Leoneans doubting the importance of having a Tripartite Committee currently looking into the allegedly flawed election. To show the world that they would not accept any move that will cost them the power, the party’s chairman, Dr Prince Harding was blunt to say, SLPP will never hand over power to the opposition, APC and that President Bio would determine who should be the next President of Sierra Leone.

Veteran APC politicians are also not pleased with the removal of ten APC parliamentarians from the legislative house and their physical assault in the well of parliament in the early days of the PAOPA regime. It was the first sad move in Sierra Leone’s political history as there has never been a time a ruling party has ever taken such measure to gain political advantage.

According to the elders, the brutalisation and the removal of the parliamentarian’s was a litmus test for SLPP, and the success marked the beginning of oppression tactics against the main opposition party. A fight back or tough resistance was widely expected at that time so that government would reconsider its actions.

Mansaray told this press that the APC politicians ought to have followed the call of erstwhile Publicity Secretary, Cornelius Deveaux who called for a nation-wide protest all over the country to reverse the actions of the court. According to Deveaux and other APC politicians, the court acted outside the laws as they ought to have ordered a rerun of the elections.

But, out of political bigotry and hypocrisy, Deveaux was abandoned in the struggle to stop the PAOPA regime from its oppression tactics leaving him with no option but to seek haven elsewhere after the police declared him wanted.

To date, Deveaux’s whereabouts remain unknown, but the opposition, All People’s Congress appears quite complacent about it as they do nothing to question government’s action. Once the door was wide opened from the outset, PAOPA government continues to lord it over the opposition on a free ride. The move to tamper with the electoral laws was part of the continuation of PAOPA’s wits and tricks to have a way for a second term.

APC representatives were in parliament when government manipulated the Public Elections, Local Government, Political Parties Regulation Commission and Proportional Representation Regulation laws just months to the June elections. APC politicians were in slumber even when members of ECOWAS (Economic Community Of West African States) parliament were making big noise about government’s move of rigging before voting.

The Liberian law maker representing his country at the ECOWAS parliament said in plain terms that no President should interfere with electoral laws within a year to the election adding that “the rule should not be changed at the middle of the game.”

While PAOPA’s actions were bitterly condemned at the ECOWAS parliament, there was virtually no APC parliamentarian to present a serious case about the oppression of their party members as well as the gloomy political climate at that time.

It was alleged that the APC parliamentarians dodged the proceedings to rectify the political anomalies ahead of the elections. It is hoped that had Sierra Leonean law makers made their voices heard, ECOWAS should have deployed in Sierra Leone to oversee the elections so that a free, fair and credible electoral process could be ensured as it happened in Liberia and Senegal.

The party’s elders also argued that the party’s greatest mistake was to allow their two parliamentarians, Mohamed Bangura and Alfred Thompson to go free after flouting the party’s order not to take part in governance until the elections are investigated.

Their participation in what many called an illegal regime without waiting for the party is one that shows that APC is bereft of an ideology, a situation that called for the resuscitation of the Elders’ Council to keep the party’s principles alive.