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Freetown Chief Imam Hosts President Koroma, Others

By  | 9 September 2013 at 22:17 | 1353 views

The Chief Imam of the Freetown Central Mosque and also Spiritual Leader of the United Council of Imams in Sierra Leone, Sheikh Ahmad Tejan Sillah was host of President Ernest Bai Koroma , Vice President Chief Alhaji Sam Sumana , the Chief Justice Haja Umu Hawa Tejan –Jalloh and the entire judiciary on September 6.

The President, Vice President and members of the judiciary were there to offer prayers for the beginning of the judicial year of 2013/2014. Addressing the jam-packed mosque on Friday, President Koroma said he was at the mosque not only to join the judiciary in offering prayers marking the beginning of the judicial year of 2013/2014, but also to manifest his support for it as a branch of government. “We as a government are happy to be here”, the president (who is serving his second term) declared, adding that the judiciary too had always complimented the efforts of the legislative body. He emphasized the essence of justice in the political dispensation of a country and how it would strengthen the pillars of peace. “Peace comes when there is justice”, he said. He however pointed out that the judiciary was faced with many challenges but yet still could dispense justice amidst those challenges.

He expressed the hope that those challenges would be surmounted. He also alluded the fact that the positive strides that the nation had experienced were as a result of his national transformation program called “Agenda For Change” , that he formulated and implemented which had now been transformed ( in his second term) to “Agenda for prosperity” , a national project that was hoped to accelerate the country’s economic growth. The president used the opportunity to laud Sierra Leoneans for the support they gave him that catapulted him to power, for the second time, with a landslide victory in the 2012 elections. “You are happy with us that was why you voted us for the second time. We will continue to provide good leadership”,, he said. He called for all Sierra Leoneans to put their hands on deck so as to enhance the country’s advancement.

According to the president, prosperity goes pari parsu with truth and justice. “ I believe you are all looking forward to this prosperity”. He called for Sierra Leoneans to emulate the culture of hard work. “This prosperity would not fall from heaven” he warned. He called on people to make truth and justice part of their lives. Earlier, Sheikh Tejan Sillah in his Friday preaching quoted extensively from the Hadith (books reporting sayings and teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad) and the Holy Quran on the concept of justice and human rights. He said the essence of offering the prayers at the mosque on that date was for God to bestow more wisdom on members of the judiciary so as to be able to adjudicate cases with equity and with an impassionate approach. Quoting from the Hadith he said truth is an essential ingredient of justice “and is a symbol with which one should sleep at all times”. He quoted the prophet saying; “I warn you strictly from lying”. The Sheikh described lying as “an evil that damages life”.

According to him, truth is an apt phenomenon in cosmic existence. “If we live in peace and have a just leader who fulfils his promises and the nation on the other hand is truthful, then that nation is bound to prosper”, the Imam said. He added that the divine mission of prophets was hinged on establishing truth and justice in human society. “A leader who does not say the truth or fulfils his promises damages a nation but President Ernest Bai Koroma is an exception”, he said. He prayed to God to guide President Ernest Bai Koroma in his leadership and the judiciary in their dispensation of justice. Under the administration of Umu Tejan jalloh as Chief Justice, the Judiciary had undergone tremendous transformation that includes the establishment of more courts in the provincial areas so as to enhance access to justice in rural areas. She is the first female Chief Justice in the history of the judiciary that spanned from colonial days under Britain to date.

Photo: President Koroma at Freetown Central Mosque. Photo credit: Awareness Times.