From the Editor’s Keyboard

10 things you should know about the Patriotic Vanguard

By  | 5 August 2015 at 10:56 | 1741 views

There are ten things you should know about this online newspaper, the Patriotic Vanguard. Ten things that should help you understand who we really are. Even though we have other pointers, these ten should do for the moment. As time goes on, as it surely will, you get more information about us. Here we ago:

1. The Patriotic Vanguard was created on July 30, 2005 by Gibril Gbanabome Koroma, a Sierra Leonean journalist/interpreter/translator/creative writer in exile in Vancouver, Canada. It’s part of a media company registered in Canada called Afri-Can publications. Afri-Can Publications also publishes Afri-Can magazine and carries out other media activities including public relations. Gibril later invited other Sierra Leonean journalists in exile in several countries to join him to present authentic and accurate news and analyses of their country to counter the often negative, inaccurate and biased information/misinformation from mainstream Western media.

2. All the journalists and writers/contributors in the Patriotic Vanguard including the publisher himself are volunteers. That’s the first thing we tell our recruits. The paper is not based in Freetown, Sierra Leone, where potential advertisers are based and online advertising is still in its nascent stages in that country. All Patriotic Vanguard staff abroad have day jobs and other sources of income separate from the newspaper itself. Their work is therefore a patriotic national sacrifice, a reflection of their love for their country.This is a very hard and difficult commitment in today’s world; it’s not for the weak or faint-hearted but for men and women of high moral and humanitarian values expecting nothing and never looking back. They are special people going way back to ancient Africa and ancient Greece to give just two examples in World History. Profound thanks from management to them. We also thank ourselves for having the fortitude to lead by example.

Reporters and writers writing from Sierra Leone make an even bigger sacrifice. PV is the only Sierra Leonean newspaper with this kind of model and philosophy (volunteerism) but that will be modified when the headquarters moves to Freetown.

3. The Patriotic Vanguard is a kind of training school for young and inexperienced journalists in Sierra Leone and other parts of Africa and the world. We train journalists on the job; sometimes they are not even aware they are being trained. Most of our reporters and contributors are today editors, publishers, government appointees and so on. Those living out of Sierra Leone have risen in their various countries as formidable community leaders and players in both the private and public sectors. We are proud of them.

4. The Patriotic Vanguard supports the current political party in power (APC) and the current government in Sierra Leone but we always do everything possible to reflect fairness, objectivity, accuracy and stringent morality and ethics in whatever we do and publish. Every newspaper or media organ has some kind of political philosophy or ideology influencing its product. The essence is how to maintain a balance, how to avoid dogmatism and outright bigotry.

5.The Patriotic Vanguard is a valuable source of information for scholars, government agencies, international journalists and other interested parties. The paper is quoted and sourced all the time by writers from around the world. The editor/publisher and staff is often contacted for information on Sierra Leone and invited to conferences and conferences around the world.

6. Stories and analyses in the Patriotic Vanguard are often reproduced or reprinted by other newspapers in Sierra Leone frequently without acknowledgment. We do not mind, we are happy to help our brothers and sisters back home.

7. The Patriotic Vanguard, in its present form, depends on donations from friends and well wishers but most of the funding comes from our own pockets. It will however be inaccurate to say we do not need help at this time while preparing to move our headquarters to Freetown where the advertisers are, where the action is. The Canadian office will of course remain open but the main office will be in Freetown. Some people think we make a lot of money from Google ads. That’s a million miles away from the truth as anybody that understands how that system works will tell you.

8. The Patriotic Vanguard is always courted by politicians, business gurus, non-governmental organizations, community and civil activists and many others for coverage and promotional publications.

9. PV currently is currently run like a non-profit although it’s registered as a commercial enterprise. There will be some changes soon but our decade-old humanitarianism and patriotism will remain a central pillar of our activities.

10. We love our country first and foremost and will do everything to keep it together as a nation and work extremely hard to make it become one of the most prosperous and stable countries on earth. That’s a promise.