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John Baimba Sesay: The Diplomat who Deserves Parliamentary Representation PDF Print E-mail
Written by Alhaji M.B. Jalloh, Press Attaché, Sierra Leone Embassy, Saudi Arabia   
Wednesday, 13 December 2017 16:55

John Baimba Sesay is a native of Kapethe Village, Safroko Limba Chiefdom, with chiefdom headquarter town of Binkolo, in Constituency 034, Bombali District. The Constituency covers Safroko Limba and Pakimasabong Chiefdoms in the same district.

Born in the early 1980’s, he holds Bachelor of Arts (BA) Mass Communication, with Hons, 2004-2008 from Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone. He also holds a post graduate Master of Arts (MA), Mass Communication (2009- June 2010) degree from the same university.

John Baimba is my colleague based in Beijing. Having worked for a number of daily newspapers, including, Independent Observer, For Di People and Awoko, he has a wealth of experience in journalism.

He also worked with Search for Common Ground/Talking Drum Studio between March 2007 and March 2008 as an Assistant Producer, primarily responsible for the weekly production of a radio documentary on decentralization (Local Councils).

Between September 2008 and February 2009, Sesay was Information Officer at the Society for Democratic Initiatives (SDI), an organization that led a campaign on the enactment of a law on Freedom of Information.

He also had a spell of period at the National Revenue Authority (NRA) in developing his career. From February 2009 to May 2011, he contributed greatly to the institution’s Media and Public Affairs department as an Assistant Public Affairs Officer, Commissioner-General’s Office.

He was also worked as a Communications Specialist at a World Bank funded project on fisheries, the West Africa Regional Fisheries Programme-Sierra Leone (WARFP-SL), from June 2011 to November, 2011. The project, with Sierra Leone, Senegal, Liberia, Cape Verde as implementing countries, was focused on the effective management of the country’s fisheries sector.

By late 2011, John Baimba Sesay was graciously appointed by His Excellency President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma, as Information Attaché, to the People’s Republic of China. His six years in diplomacy have been progressive, given his contribution, through his work, to the surge in ties between his country and the People’s Republic of China.

He is a member of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalist (SLAJ). As a Journalist, he has written extensively on national issues not least on governance, decentralization and diplomacy. His 2010 thesis work submitted to the Department of Mass Communication, Fourah Bay College USL was focused on how Access to Information could help in Strengthening Democratic Governance.

Should he be awarded the symbol to contest for a Parliamentary Seat for Constituency 034 and win, Sesay looks forward to “providing an effective representation, by not just been seen, but the constituency should be heard on national issues.”

On the telephone line from the Beijing Capital International Airport shortly before he departed for Sierra Leone last night, Sesay says, he believes there shouldn’t be a missing link between those (Councilors) representing the constituency at the local level through the decentralization process and a Member of Parliament.

“When coordination between those two players is missing, added to closer ties of cooperation and consultations with other stakeholders, it becomes a challenge even for the growth of the constituency”, he told me when boarding his flight.

He also has a strong desire to promoting education. Hear him: “There is a lot we could do to change the face of the Constituency.” He added that, “paying attention to education could go a long way in addressing those huge expectations from our people, even if in the long term.”

Umaru S. Dura is the former Minister Counsellor and Head of Chancery at the Sierra Leone Mission in Saudi Arabia. He hails from the same Chiefdom. This is what he told me about the Beijing based diplomat. “It's the likes of John Baimba Sesay that progressive and well-meaning Sierra Leoneans should wish to see in positions of trust,” the retired diplomat added that, “for a person of Baimba Sesay’s caliber, character and vision to be in charge of Constituency 034, there would be hope for the people to benefit from developments in many areas and no doubt, he would deliver the goods accordingly.”

Umaru Dura furthered that: “The man has been tested in a number of domains and areas of responsibility and, to the admiration of many; he has invariably proven to be a match of the tasks assigned to him.” He concluded: “So, what else are we looking for in candidates vying for such a significant position as a parliamentarian? Let's test the man. I am sure, if given the opportunity, I trust that he would excel and the sky will be his limit.”

For Sorie Sudan Sesay, the former Editor of Independent Observer newspaper and current Minister Plenipotentiary at the Sierra Leone High Commission in London and CEO, Sierra Update, Sierra Leone’s widely read magazine, “Baimba’s dedication, hard work and patriotism are really inspiring.”

Sudan who have known Baimba for nearly two decades added: “The young man has proven to be not only diligent and astute, but also a patriot who has the interest of Sierra Leone at heart and with all his lofty qualities, John Baimba Sesay deserves to occupy any position of trust.



26th IPRA Conference in Sierra Leone Ends on a High Note

The International Peace Research Association (IPRA) successfully held its 26th General Conference on ‘Agenda for Peace and Development: Conflict Prevention, Post-Conflict Transformation, and the Conflict, Disaster Risk and Sustainable Development Debate’ in collaboration with the 10TH Dealing With Disasters Series, Northumbria University (UK)and Sakarya University (Turkey) and  the University of  Sierra Leone at the Bintumani Conference Centre in Freetown, Sierra Leone from November 27 to 1st December 2016.


Business News


The Parliament of Sierra Leone on Monday 04th December 2017 debated and ratified two additional agreements aimed at improving and expanding Ports facilities in Sierra Leone to be at par with international best practices.

Presenting both Agreements prior to ratification, the Minister of Transport and Aviation, Balogun Koroma said that the additional Agreements are geared towards addressing some of the concerns raised by MPs, in respect of expanding our Ports facilities to accommodate larger vessels, and the issuance of license with the view of combating money laundering, contra-band goods, and attracting more funds for Government.

Hon. Dr. Bernadette Lahai, Minority Leader of the House, also supported the ratification of the two Agreements, saying if our Ports are not developed, we would not be able to attract huge vessels; thus the need for the continuous improvement of our Ports facilities.


Media News

"President Koroma is a big disappointment to press freedom" - SLAJ

Secretary General of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ), Ahmed Sahid Nasralla, has said that President Ernest Bai Koroma has disappointed the media on press freedom in the country. 

“Successive governments have given us false hopes on the repeal of the criminal libel law. The politicians have lied to us. They have taken us to be big fools. President Koroma is our biggest disappointment. We had high hopes in him but he failed us woefully. So we will not trust any politician again, because when they get into office they forget about their promises,” said Nasralla.
Nasralla was speaking last Friday while formally launching a report on criminal defamation laws in Africa by PEN Sierra Leone at the SLAJ Harry Yansaneh Memorial Hall, Campbell Street, Freetown. 
He recalled that before he was first elected President of the Republic in 2007, President Koroma was a staunch campaigner against criminal libel law in Sierra Leone, but when he became President he suddenly had a different view.



Your Excellency Sir,

For over a month now, since the ECOWAS Regional Court in Abuja, Nigeria handed down their landmark opinion on the Vice President, Samuel Sam-Sumana’s appeal law suit against his “unconstitutional removal” from power by your APC government, having been legally sanctioned by the Supreme Court of Sierra Leone, I have been taken, both by extreme trepidation and satisfaction, as I continue my reflection. In their ruling, (in resume,) the ECOWAS Courtoverturned” the Sierra Leone Supreme Court’s seemingly “compromised” opinion that saw Mr. Sam Sumana arbitrarily or constitutionally deposed from his position as the duly elected Vice President of Sierra Leone (alongside you,) midway your second presidential tenure in 2015; just after the infamous Ebola viral epidemic devastating scourge on Sierra Leone. The ECOWAS Court ruling therefore “ordered” the immediate reinstatement of the vice president, furthering that all backlog of his remunerations and emoluments be accorded him, from the time he was sacked, to date; along with his claim for damages of U. S. $ 250 million.

Upon the ruling by this higher regional court, I have had to do some very sober reflections and musing over the “political manoeuvres” and intrigues that originally erupted from an internal APC party wrangling that proceeded to the Sierra Leone parliament, and had to eventually culminate into what most objective and independent legal minds considered a “blatant travesty of justice and breach of our constitution.” This ruling also brought a legal embarrassment to the Sierra Leone justice system in the sub region, continent and world over. And whereas I would not want to meddle with the political ramifications and implications of that higher regional court’s “legal opinion,” I would like to briefly examine the moral and economic considerations, as I objectively see them. This then obviously takes me back to my caption question that I would summarize as “Who Pays the ECOWAS Court’s Ruling Charges??”


View Point


Dear Mr. President, events leading to, including the horrible aftermath of the deadly Ebola Virus Disease, the twin disasters of mudslide and flooding convey unarguably a fatalistic dose of stress. Worsening is the inflation of basic food stuff and the devaluation of our Leones which has made life very difficult for the average citizens.

Mr. President,stress is increasingly becoming visible in the conduct of most Sierra Leoneans; hence stress is a pressure or worry caused by the problems in somebody's life.

Before 2007 elections, protestation songs by Emmerson Bockarie, Innocent and "Dry yai crew" assumed the role of the opposition parties against the Tejan Kabbah-led SLPP government. Today, public transport cabs/buses, ghettos and the ‘Ataya base’ have now assumed that position in venting out frustrations against your APC led government.


News - Press Release

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation presents AWOL Awards to outgone Minister

(MFAIC Press Office, 4th January, 2018). The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Dr. Kaifala Marah has presented the All Walks Of Life (AWOL) prestigious award of ‘Best Ministry of the Year 2017’  to the outgone Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Samura M.W. Kamara at a press conference held at the Ministry’s conference Hall, Tower Hill, Freetown.

In his brief statement before officially handing over the award to the outgone Minister, Dr. Marah gave a brief overview of the introduction of performance contracts in 2014 by His Excellency Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma that set in motion the process of enhancing and operational mandates in various MDAs. It is against this background that the Ministry was among the five best performing Ministries based on the outcome of the Ministry’s Performance Contract Assessment Report for 2016/17 (Performance Tracking Table – PTT) in the country.

Dr. Kaifala Marah lauded the relentless efforts of Dr. Samura M.W. Kamara, during whose tenure the Ministrydeveloped and articulated, for the first time ever, a comprehensive strategy to guide and re-invigorate the national approach to foreign policy and international cooperation in a rapidly changing global environment.


Society -Local News


(MFAIC Press Office, 5thJanuary, 2018). Five Foreign Envoys including the Head of Delegation of the European Union, Amb. Tom Vens; the Honourary Consul of the Arab Republic of Syria, Hussein Jawad; Charge D’ Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Nadali Heydari; Charge D’ Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, Wang Xinming; and the Honourary Consul of India, Harish Agnani; have paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Kaifala Marah at his Tower Hill office in Freetown.

According to the foreign envoys during their separate meetings with the Minister, their visit to the newly appointed Minister is to enhance and deepen the existing partnerships and bilateral relations between their respective countries and the Republic of Sierra Leone. They extended fraternal salutations and congratulatory messages from their Government and people of their respectively countries to the Government and people of Sierra Leone.

The foreign envoys underscored their Governments’ continuous assistance and support to Sierra Leone. Thecurrent electoral climate in the countrywas discussed within the perspectives of bilateral and multilateral relations, underlining the common interests in developing political, cultural and economic relations, as well as the interpersonal relations between the EU, the Arab Republic of Syria, the Islamic Republic of Iran,the People’s Republic of China, India and Sierra Leone.




The Ambassador of the State of Israel to the Republic of Korea, His Excellency Ambassador Chaim Choshen today 4th January 2018 paid a courtesy call on Sierra Leone's Ambassador to the Republic of Korea, His Excellency Ambassador Omrie Michael Golley, at the Sierra Leone Mission in Seoul, the South Korean Capital. 

Ambassador Choshen, who was appointed as Ambassador of Israel to South Korea in August 2016, expressed his appreciation for being warmly received by his Sierra Leonean host and counterpart, and stated that his Government was very keen to expand its relations with Africa, citing the examples of Official Visits in recent months by the Israeli Prime Minister Mr Benjamin Netanyahu to various countries in Africa.

Recounting the recent Official Visit of His Excellency President Ernest Bai Koroma to Israel, Ambassador Omrie Golley stated that the recent visit of President Koroma underscored the importance that his Government was attaching to expanding Sierra Leone's ties with Israel, particularly in the economic sphere.



It will not be business as usual – Bio assures diaspora

He was passionate, confident and assuring as he addressed hundreds of Sierra Leoneans at the prestigious Royal Regency Hall in London on Saturday 9th December 2017 with a very simple message that as the next President it will not be business as usual.

For a man who has a solid track record as a disciplinarian, Rtd. Brigadier Julius Maada Bio continues to attract many voters who feel the country needs a strong and disciplined leadership.

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