Concord Times (Freetown)

25 February 2013

Sierra Leone: Youth Minister Accused of Igniting Chaos

President Ernest BaiKoroma's appointee as Minister of Youth Affairs hasbeen accused of inciting unrest at the All People's Congress headquarters during the inauguration ceremony of the president last Friday; a development that saw the swift intervention of the police to put the situation under control.

Concord Times learnt that Hon. AlimamyKamara - still awaiting parliamentary approval -was engaged in a serious scuffle with a member of the National Union of APC Students (NUAS) that saw the whole Old Railway Line vicinity being put under siege for a brief period.

"It is a complete disgrace to see a Member of Parliament - who has just been appointed as minister by the president - to openly engage in a fight with a student in the full view of members of the public," a member of the APC youth wing, AlieKamara, remarked in apparent frustration at the ugly incident.

He explained that they (NUAS) were holding a meeting when the minister-designate entered the hall and remarked that the last convention held by NUAS was without his blessing and has therefore decided to annul its outcome.

"If anyone of you dare go against my decision, I'll have no alternative but to use my power against that person," Hon. Kamara was quoted as having threatened.

This statement, according to an eyewitness, was vehemently protested against thus causing commotion in the hall.

Hon. AlimamyKamarawas alleged to have ordered some APC task force members to block the main gate to the entrance of the party headquarters and indiscriminately beat up NUAS members. One of the victims of the beating was former NUAS president, who was badly injured on his right hand.

The situation was only quelled down when a large number of police personnel materialised at the scene, with some arrests made. Many APC supporters who witnessed the shameful episode condemned the action of the minister-designate, still a Member of Parliament who they believe should be a role model for the party's young people.

However, Hon. Kamara could not be reached for his reaction.

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