Assistant Inspector General of Police for the Northern Region, F.U.K. Dabor, has confirmed to Concord Times that they they have remanded two people for questioning in respect of the alleged attack on Chairman and Leader of Alliance Democratic Party (ADP), Mohamed Kamarainba Mansaray.
Mansaray had alleged over the weekend that his vehicle was violently attacked last Saturday by supporters of the ruling All Peoples Congress in Lunsar, ahead of bye-elections scheduled for 9 July, in constituency 050.
He told this reporter yesterday that he suffered physical assault by supporters of APC aspirant Osman Karankay Conteh, at Maronko village, just at the outskirt of Lunsar, Marampa Chiefdom, Port Loko District.
The vacancy in the constituency came after President Koroma appointed Ms. Isata Kabia Minister of State II in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, thus quitting her post as lawmaker.
The ADP leader identified two of the alleged assailants as a certain ‘spaceman’, who is the Public Relation Officer of the APC aspirant and another male who goes by the alias ‘Madigbo.’
He alleged that his driver was beaten and fatally stabbed in the eye, adding that the attackers used unprintable invectives on his mother and even attempted to burn his vehicle.
“They physically pushed, banged and hit my car, damaged its windscreens and in the process stabbed my driver and some of my supporters in the vehicle were maliciously wounded. They even held my vehicle, telling us that we should not go anywhere,” he explained his ordeal with the alleged ruling party thugs.
Mansaray explained that he was in Maronko village, where was due to hold a meeting with his supporters, and that while addressing the crowd the alleged attackers stormed the meeting and succeeded in disrupting the campaign event.
He said the ruling APC party that cowed opposition parties into submission in the ‘80s was back to its old ways.
“I cannot come to terms with this happening in the 21st century. It is most painful and must be condemned by all and sundry. This is highly disturbing and nauseating too,” he fumed.
He contested another bye-election in constituency 030 in Bombali district where he came a close second to the ruling party candidate Hon. Ibrahim Ben Kargbo.
But he has petitioned the outcome, claiming that the winner was ineligible to contest because he still held his post as Senior Adviser to the President and was being paid from the Consolidated Fund.
The 1991 Constitution bars persons from contesting for political office if they had failed to resign their post in public office twelve months earlier. However, the matter is still yet to be determined by the High Court.
Meanwhile, Deputy National Publicity Secretary II of the ruling party, Robin Fallay, farcically claimed that Mansaray was chased by his own supporters because of what he referred to as his ‘fake and bogus’ promises he failed to fulfill.
Fallay, who defeated from the main opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party just ahead of elections in 2012, claimed the ADP leader was faced with issues of self destruction because he had failed to fulfill promises he made to his supporters during local council bye-election in ward 172 in the same constituency.
He said the allegation that he was attacked by supporters of the ruling All Peoples Congress party was untrue and unfounded.
“Kamarainba was never attacked by supporters of the APC. He was attacked by his own supporters who felt aggrieved over the fake and bogus promises he made to them during the local council bye-election,” he averred.
“He promised to give them a bag of rice plus cash of one hundred and fifty thousand Leones but he failed to do so. He is being haunted by the bogus and fake promises he made to the people who are very much disappointed in him,” said Fallay.
He also said that the ADP leaders could have been attacked as a result of his verbal and vulgar attacks on the personality of President Ernest Bai Koroma, whom he had referred to a ‘thief’, among several others.
But the ADP denied the allegation, adding that he had only said the President was a ‘failure’ as his policies have woefully failed, almost eight years into office.
Meanwhile, the National Elections Watch (NEW) has expressed dismay and condemned the repeated violence in the lead to bye-elections in constituency 001 in Kailahun District and 050 in Port Loko District.
“NEW strongly condemns the level of intolerance and violence occurring during election campaigns. It is very unfortunate to note that we are still witnessing these demeaning situations that are not supposed to be part of our political party processes. It is criminal according to the 2012 Public Elections Act for anyone to be involved in such behavior and therefore we urge political parties to refrain from instigating the youths to perpetuate violence on their political party opponents during electioneering processes,” a statement by the group urged.