''All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing'' - Edmund Burke


S I E R R A  H E R A L D

Vol XI No 5

The tendency sometimes to protect perpetrators for the sake of peace...doesn't help society. Impunity should not be allowed to stand. - Kofi Annan on Waki report

Contact us
All Africa Conference of Churches
African Union Peace and Security
UK Serious Fraud Office
World Association for Human Rights - USA
Audit Service Sierra Leone
National Union of Journalists (UK)
BBC African Service
Daily Trust of Nigeria
UN Great Lakes
Writer Adichie
Southwark Council
S.L. Web
All Africa.com
Africa Week
Human Rights Watch
Amnesty International
Trial Watch
International Criminal Court
One World
Royal African Society
University of
East London
Nigeria Anti Corruption Commission
Institute for Democracy in Africa
archive 6
archive 7
archive 8
archive 9
archive 10
archive 11
archive 12
archive 13
archive 14
archive 15
archive 16
archive 17
archive 18
archive 19
archive 20
archive 21
archive 22
archive 23
archive 24
archive 25
archive 26
archive 27
archive 28
archive 29
archive 30
archive 31
archive 32
archive 33
archive 34
archive 35
archive 36
archive 37
archive 38
archive 39
archive 40
archive 41




Sunday August 9, 2014 - Clueless and rudderless cabal wants a 72-hour curfew to keep people indoors as the blustering spokesman for the rat, one Alpha Sahid Bakar Kanu tells the world that the incubation period for Ebola is 2-3 days. Is the army of 21,000 untrained and unqualified health volunteers an outlet for APC party activists?The rat's snake oil salesman Alpha Sahid Bakar Kanu blustering away with half truths, lies and deception.Ebola victims who did not pull through get an undignified burial as the battle gets heated up against the scourge. If only Sierra Leone had the right leadership. Can suspected cases be removed for treatment fast enough?

The international air waves, radio and television had been full of it - that the authorities in Sierra Leone are planning what they call a lockdown of the entire country starting 18th September. There's confusion over how many days people would be prevented from going about their daily chores in a country where the poor live from day to day not knowing just where the next meal would be coming from.

The snake oil merchant who glibly speaks of being the man who knows everything the rat propagates, one Alpha Sahid Bakar Kanu, told CNN on Saturday that it would be a three-day lockdown. He said three days but should you read the bit and pieces coming from the many and varied mouthpieces dedicated to the "re-branding" of the rat and our once beautiful country, Sierra Leone, they are talking about 18th-21st which would effectively mean 4 days. Be it three or four days, this idea would just not work.

You cannot restrict the movement of people en masse in a system where there's no leadership, lack of logistics and planning and where those in authority would just take to the airwaves and without any warning tell people that they were going to restrict their movements for three-four days.

CNN notes - Sierra Leone plans a three-day nationwide lockdown in an effort to halt an Ebola outbreak that has killed hundreds, a move that a leading medical charity said Saturday will not help. People will not be allowed to leave their homes for three days under the plan, set to start September 19.

The lockdown is being billed as a predominantly social campaign rather than a medical one, where volunteers will go door-to-door to talk to people. "We believe this the best way for now to identify those who are sick and remove them from those who are well," said Alhaji Alpha Kanu, Sierra Leone's minister of information and communication.

But Médecins Sans Frontières, also known as Doctors Without Borders, said such a lockdown is unlikely to stop the spread of the disease. "Large scale coercive measures like forced quarantines and lockdowns are driving people underground and jeopardizing the trust between people and health providers. This is leading to the concealment of cases and is pushing the sick away from health systems," the charity group said in a statement.

During the three days of Sierra Leone's lockdown, 21,000 volunteers will fan out across the nation to talk with people about how to protect themselves from the disease as well as identify Ebola cases, Kanu said. It was unclear how many of these volunteers would be health workers. The information minister described the volunteers as young people from the very communities where they will be working. "Resistance will be less. They will be talking to people they know," 

Also, there is a question of what a three-day lockdown will do to slow the spread of the virus, given that the Ebola incubation period can range between two and 21 days. The virus is spread through contact with bodily fluids, and early symptoms include sudden onset of fever, weakness, muscle pain, headaches and a sore throat. More than 3,600 people have been diagnosed with Ebola since the first documented case in December, the World Health Organization has said."

In the CNN and other interviews snake oil merchant Alpha Kanu once again displayed his incompetence while trying to talk smart on CNN and other international media outlets. Here's a rodent in the camp of the chief rat, Ernest Bai Koroma telling the world that our country, the whole country would become in his own words "a makeshift laboratory" but what is even more worrying is his government's plan during the lock-down.

"During the three days of Sierra Leone's lockdown, 21,000 volunteers will fan out across the nation to talk with people about how to protect themselves from the disease as well as identify Ebola cases". And there he was on Saturday telling the BBC that these 21,000 volunteers would be divided into groups of three to give a whopping seven thousand units that would be scattered all over.

He told the BBC that these people, ordinary folks with no health delivery experience are to visit homes to determine who is free of Ebola and who is a suspected case. And these are untrained personnel who could be putting themselves at risk because of the opportunity to make some quick but we dare say very risky money.

If we know the rat and that odious ruling party well, we would not be surprised to learn that a majority, if not all those who have been drafted into this mad campaign would be APC party card bearers or those with links to the APC - just as they did those years back when it came to the business of recruitment into the national army or the holiday work scheme for college students.

Another news outlet, the Guardian has this -

"Dr Mohamed Yilla, a Freetown obstetrician and country director of the MamaYe maternal health programme, told the Guardian the lockdown was a good idea but said it would be a challenge to enforce. "If it is handled properly and we get it right, it will yield some significant results," he said.

He said the outbreak was spreading because infected people were not going to hospital for treatment but were staying at home and passing the virus on to other family members.

We now have the potential for things like measles to start creeping up again. We have to be prepared for the bigger health crisis we have on our hands." Yilla said the immediate problem would be logistical. If 1,000 new potential cases were identified during the lockdown, there needed to be enough ambulances to transport them, staff to deal with blood screening and the correct facilities in hospitals.

Dr Yilla's point must give further concern to what we have been saying all along. There are a number of illnesses/afflictions that still trouble people apart from Ebola and the ramshackle and leaderless charge in all directions would mean that these ailments/diseases would take a back seat putting the lives of many at risk.

Tom Dannatt, founder of Street Child, a charity which employs 650 people in Sierra Leone and Liberia, also raised concern over the scale of the lockdown. He said: "Can you imagine telling everyone in this country you have to stay at home for three days?" He also expressed concerned about the country's street children, many of whom live in food markets which will be closed. "Where will they go?" he asked. But Dannatt said he hoped the measure would make the international community wake up to the severity of the outbreak. "It will highlight the fact Ebola is touching everyone. It's not just the thousand who have contracted it," he said.

Alpha Kanu talks glibly about giving people enough warning to stock up for the days when the country would be shut down and says we are used to such a situation as we did during the war!!! This cad is a real beast.

How many people in Sierra Leone can afford to stock up food for three or four days?

Where and how will they stock these things in a country where people live by the day.

Yes Alpha Kanu, you may stock your deep freezers with more than enough - fish, meat and what you can get from your friends in the mining/extractive industries. The large majority, poor and unconnected in Sierra Leone just cannot afford to do this.

The BBC has been taking a special interest in Ebola and how the organisation can help sensitise people especially in Sierra Leone, the only one in the Mano River Union countries that has a special relation with the United Kingdom - a former colonial relationship. Umaru Fofana says on the BBC -

"Never since the rebel invasion of Freetown in 1999 have I seen fear on the faces of people like in recent times. Even so, many people feel three days is too long to be asked to stay indoors. Many others feel three days is too short to achieve the government's aim of restricting the virus. Ebola has caused widespread fear in Freetown. Sierra Leonean officials earlier said more than 20,000 people would be deployed to make sure residents stayed indoors."

When we saw this on a BBC page, we could not believe our eyes -

"Health ministry spokesman Sidie Yahya Tunis told the BBC he did not expect the public to object. "You follow or else you'll be breaking the law. If you disobey then you are disobeying the president," he said.

So is it treason these days to disobey the rat?

Who is he - is the rat a servant of the people or an overlord?

Over to you Sidie. We'll leave it at that for now.

This link is for Alpha Sahid Bakar Kanu who says the incubation period for Ebola is 2-3 days. It is from the World Health Organisation, the WHO. "The incubation period, that is, the time interval from infection with the virus to onset of symptoms, is 2 to 21 days."

"Other diseases that should be ruled out before a diagnosis of EVD can be made include:

malaria, typhoid fever, shigellosis, cholera, leptospirosis, plague, rickettsiosis, relapsing fever, meningitis, hepatitis and other viral haemorrhagic fevers. Ebola virus infections can be diagnosed definitively in a laboratory through several types of tests.

So armed with the thermometer devices, how are these untrained personnel going to be effective when these diseases have to be eliminated before thinking of Ebola?

We see it as a ploy to reward APC activists and if we know them well, there would be names on that list that could well be non-existent, ghost workers designed to get greedy and thieving paws and claws into a national tragedy.

Yearning for the mother country?

The right choice is Kevin McPhilips Travel

©Sierra Herald 2002