A VISION FOR SIERRA LEONE
Ones she was called the Athens of West Africa with lion-shaped hills stretching across Freetown the capital city. Her sons and daughters of yester years were proud to be called Sierra Leoneans. This was a place where six pence can sustain you until your next month’s salary. This was a nation who’s kind and hospitable people potrayed the true spirit of friendship and peace in an atmosphere of tranquility. Even the precious beaches and abundant marine life and forest life was romantic. Let alone our plenteous diamonds, gold, bauxite, iron ore, rutile, platinum, etc which could have been the key to excessive wealth and luxury.
All this happened during the colonial era and just after independence, then slowly, discord, ill will, dangerous politics, bad governance, corruption, tribalism, sectionalism suppression and poverty crept into our beloved country. Then in 1991 terror visited our land, mayhem and destruction followed. We suffered greatly. The Athens of West Africa had now become the darkness of West Africa; our diamonds now had a first name called ‘blood’. This fuelled the war peace and tranquility fled. We cried and prayed earnestly for peace as marauding bandits, disloyal soldiers and wicked rebels wrecked havoc on this nation.
Than finally the prince of destruction left our nation we won back our peace. With the help of God, Ecomog, Unamsil and the British stability once more returned. We had the British stability once more returned. We had a peaceful election; a successful Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s public hearing and all of us now have renewed hope for our future.
As a patriotic citizen there are lofty desires in my heart for this nation. It is my prayer that in the not too distant future from now; we Sierra Leoneans will change our attitude positively. It is my desire that every Sierra Leonean nurses a passion for community development and practice the following creed: “Learn diligently, work assiduously, and enjoy luxury”.
Sierra Leone must be a nation where human rights especially child and women’s rights are observed and adhered to. It must be a nation that encourages inter-faith, inter-ethnic and marital cohesion. We must be an example to other nations. The culture of reconciliation, peace and friendship must not only be shown to strangers but also among us. Patriotism must be our guiding principle since it is the cornerstone of nation building. We as young people and students should learn to identify expose and develop our talents. I also hope that Government provides affordable primary health care throughout the country; decentralization must be embraced and practiced in Sierra Leone.
I therefore hope that Sierra Leoneans, for the sake of peace will forgive and reconcile and that Sierra Leone will be a happy nation again. Sierra Leoneans have to realize that nothing good comes out of violence. Finally I hope Sierra Leone and the world in general will try prevent war at all cost.
WRITER: Augustine Lavai – Tiva Bundu
Final Year Arts
Department of History
Peace and conflict studies
Fourah Bay College