Anytime Soon… Bio To Announce Ambassadors, Others

 

A pattern has been established in the Sierra Leone governance architecture: that when one political party replaces another in power, just as happens in the USA when power changes hand, political appointees of the former government are replaced with new appointees of the new Head of State.

Accordingly, since he was appointed as Head of State on the 4th of April, 2018, President Bio, with the power to hire and fire, has been systematically replacing key political appointees in the former government by people of his own picking. He started with naming new cabinet ministers and their deputies. This was followed by the relieving of all ambassadors and press attaches that were appointed by the former Head of State. Their tenure in office ended at the end of June.

Sierra Leone’s embassies, high commission and consular offices abroad provide invaluable diplomatic, political, legal, economic and cultural services for both the state and its citizens living abroad. For example, the former Ambassador to South Korea, Omrie Golley was very instrumental in Sierra Leone signing a very important fisheries deal with that country, among other things that he accomplished. Thus, it is important that President Bio fills the vacancies that now exist in the leadership of our embassies and high commission.

Speculation is rife as to who and who President Bio would appoint as the country’s new emissaries abroad, having said that international cooperation will play a key role in his government’s implementation of the ‘New Direction’ in terms of soliciting capital and technical support from the country’s traditional international development partners as well as creating new linkages in order to push forward robustly and dynamically government’s programmes.

Sierra Leone has ambassadors and staff in the United Nations, USA, UK, Germany, Brussels, China, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Egypt, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Guinea and Gambia. Will President Bio fill those ambassadorial vacancies with seasoned career diplomats or will he spring a surprise on the nation by appointing relatively unknown people to those positions, as he has done in his previous appointments.

At the political level, it is said that party apparatchiks whose names are missing in the coming diplomatic appointments will have to wait on the bench until new vacancies emerge as President Bio has filled all the major vacancies in cabinet and heads of parastatals and agencies of government.

Meanwhile, it is unknown those President Bio would name as press attaches. It is reported that this government in its expenditure reduction drive will appoint only five press attaches, one each to the country’s key embassies and the High Commission in Britain.