Ernest, Bio To Meet At State House

 

With political tension in the country over the past few months having reached fever pitch, causing four major donor partner country ambassadors to call for de-escalation of the tension and peace, progress has been made in bridging the communication gap between the ruling Sierra Leone People’s Party New Direction government and the leadership of the main opposition All Peoples Congress Party with the news that their Chairman and Leader, former president Ernest Bai Koroma and President Julius Maada Bio are to meet at State House.

The breakthrough came after on the instruction of President Bio, Vice President Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh recently on June 15th met with the APC chairman and Leader at his retirement lodge in Makeni.

At that momentous meeting, the two gentlemen discussed many issues of national interest. The ex-president raised the issue of the withdrawal of his state security details that had not been replaced because he objected to the North Police commander selecting new personnel to change his former security detail without consultation with him. The former president asked VP Jalloh to convey to President Bio that whilst he was not against changing of his security detail, which is routine, he appealed for one or two police officers that he is close with be part of the new detail, which message the VP said he will take to his boss. The former president’s request has been granted by President Bio and now his security detail is back in place.

A close source said that the former president and Bio are now on speaking terms, and that they should have met earlier when the ex president paid a visit recently to his Party headquarters in Freetown but unfortunately Bio had pressing state matters to attend to. “Bio has opened up,” the source disclosed, “even though the two sides can agree to disagree, progress is being made in reaching a common understanding between the two statesmen,” source added.

Meanwhile, with APC having refused to officially tae part in the Bintumani III national peace and cohesion dialogue conference that was summoned by President Bio, many political watchers have stated that the rapprochement between the leaders of the country’s two biggest parties is a right step in the direction of easing political tension in the country, as well as it being a major stepping stone towards achieving the president’s goal of establishing peace and cohesion in the country in order to elicit full national cooperation for collectively achieving the country’s development aspirations, recalling that at the Bintumani Conference, senior APC politician. Alpha Khan noted that it is better for the two parties to dialogue than to fight each other.