Salone News

"PMDC Has Become a Threat to the SLPP"----Dauda Tombo Bangura

11 March 2006 at 03:24 | 602 views

A very senior official of the PMDC, Mr. Dauda Tombo Bangura recently delivered an interesting and stirring speech in the Washington Metro Area in which he explained the philosophy and objectives of his party for the benefit of his listeners and other Sierra Leoneans everywhere. We publish below the full text of the speech sent to us by one of our US contributors, Karamoh Kabba.

Let the Wind of “Positive Change” Blow

Speech by Dauda Tombo Bangura: Delivered to the P.M.D.C. General Assembly of the Washington Metro Area, USA Chapter

We have called you here today, like always, on matters of grave importance, except if you live in the S.L.P.P. world where the leaders call their people only when a fierce wind of “Positive Change” is blowing.

The British prime minister, Harold Macmillan, on February 3 1960, in South Africa, upon sensing the burning desire for change in the African peoples from colonialism to self-rule, said: "The wind of change is blowing through this [African] continent, and whether we like it or not, this growth of national consciousness is a political fact. We must all accept it as a fact, and our national policies must take account of it."

Sierra Leone gained its independence a year after that historic speech by Macmillan, on April 27, 1961. We enjoyed brief democratic governments under the Margais afterwards. The Margai family is not a political dynasty: it means Charles Margai has a burning desire to affect a “Positive Change” in Sierra Leone. He responded to the people’s demand for a new party with the “Positive Change” concept. Here in America, Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” march on Washington, on August 28, 1963, was a classical example. Last year, the American, the European Union and the British Embassies came together and issued a joint statement of concern over the S.L.P.P. foot-dragging the registration of political parties. But the S.L.P.P., unlike the British Empire, the European Union, the international organizations and the United States government, has no ears for the fierce wind of “Positive Change” that is blowing.

This brings us to the recent rumor of the plot to assassinate Margai. We have a strong message for would be assassins: they are cowards; we are not afraid; and Charles Margai is not afraid either. Charles Margai of the P.M.D.C. is a man of virtue, courage and wisdom-has less to do with just the name, has more to do with the diligence and majesty; he walks the path of nobility that has been passed on to him. Sometimes, it takes such a man with such burning desires to deliver his people on the mountaintop of their destination. Make no mistake about it; there are many Charles Margais in this movement.
This is evident in the way the P.M.D.C. is becoming the fastest growing political party regardless of the intimidation and foot-dragging tactics by the S.L.P.P. government to complete its registration.

Today, I will update you on progress in the P.M.D.C., and encourage you to do what we need to do to keep much momentum in the furnace to blow the S.L.P.P. away come 2007.

The P.M.D.C. was borne out of the desire to uplift the marginalized sector of our society after the S.L.P.P. convention that one of the contenders, former Ambassador John Leigh, called “conbention.” This means that we [the people] were not wrong when we rose up roaring as the majestic felines of the Lion Mountain in peaceful demonstration that we need another party. We consulted the East, South and North in the two weekends following the Makeni convention with the question; what is the way forward? The people demanded the need for a new party, and we answered their demand with the P.M.D.C. Since then, we have become a threat to the S.L.P.P. to the point that they want us out by any means necessary.

We have written a constitution that is democratic in composition that we have pledged to live by. I must share this anecdote with you without naming names: Recently, in one of our executive meetings, we hung up on an issue, and some one raised a point and pointed to it in the constitution, and he won instantly. It also means that if we come to a consensus that there is a flaw in the constitution we will willingly go back on the drawing board to deal with that aspect of it. We therefore encourage you to read the constitution and the manifesto-though they are the barometers of the wind of “Positive Change”, are written by fallible men and women.

As Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora, let me refer you to Section 2 - Foreign Policy and International Relations - (i) and (j) of the manifesto; 2 (i) reads as follows: “Ensure that compatriots in the Diaspora fully participate in national development. Such participation will extend to making them eligible to vote and be voted for at national elections. Reciprocally, they will be expected to pay their taxes to meet their civic responsibility.” And 2(j) goes: “Review the law of the land with a view to recognizing dual citizenship for Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora.” It is impressive-it means that your little child can possibly enjoy the full privileges of dual citizenship when he or she grows up, not the way the S.L.P.P. is going about it; laden with unreasonable conditionalities.

When I was in Freetown about two months ago, way before the provisional registration, many people have come forward to represent their constituencies under the P.M.D.C. That is good news for us. We encourage every one of you who has interest in contesting for parliament to consider going back home to deliver your village, your town, your constituency and if possible your district to the movement. We will stand behind you all the way. Remember, the remarkable progress so far is without a permanent registration. Imagine how many people the P.M.D.C. would attract once the registration is completed.

You all heard of the many people who joined the P.M.D.C. following the provisional registration: well, in the hood where I come from, where the S.L.P.P. would never have discovered me, we say; ‘you aint see notin yet:’
Article III (2) (i) of the PMDC constitution that talks about membership reads: “Founding Member - A person who has been a member of the movement at its inception and has played a pivotal role leading to its registration. This category is closed after registration.” We are expecting to get our final registration around the 15th of this month. I urge you all to take advantage of it and register as founding members. The benefits are enormous, notwithstanding going down in the history books as a founding member of the P.M.D.C. You will become immortal-children unborn will read about your historic feat. We need your registration, we need your monthly subscriptions, and we need your donations.

We have decided against the warpath in times of oppression. We have chosen the P.M.D.C. constitution and manifesto over guns and machetes. When people are pushed so hard, too far, and so long, they would surely fight back-it is a tenet of nature. Needless to say the present state of condition in Sierra Leone was the fertilizer for the so-called ‘a pool of idle and disgruntled youth’ that in turn fueled the decade-long rebel war that has been characterized by some of the egregious war crimes against humanity in recent years. But here we are in the forefront of the battle of the “Wind of Positive Change”, so pleasant that, all we are carrying are our heads, our willpowers and our wallets.

But let me remind you: recently, John Leigh of the S.L.P.P. called our people “Low grade noisemakers - san san boys, honda drivers, ex-combatants, carwash boys, riffraff, etc.” He forgot that our movement is aimed at uplifting the groups he identified. But such forgetfulness is the natural attribute of the S.L.P.P. leadership. Let me quote one of our members, the Sierra Leonean writer, Karamoh Kabba’s recent response to John’s condescending statement against our people:

“If the ‘powerful people’ have no intention to seize more votes than they are entitled to through the ballot box from the powerless people, by force, by now, their untraditional ways must be synchronized in their heads to the hard realization that the most powerful resource in a democracy is the man and his vote: powerful or powerless; rich or poor; influential or not. The issues and power of persuasion and influencing people by public speaking and on one-on-one interaction are what make the difference, not the ‘power’. And that difference is most beneficial to a cause only when it influences not the few ‘powerful people’ who are mostly often attached to certain ideals, but the masses amongst whom are the powerless people, and that population, the powerless, the marginalized and the peasants, is what we are out to uplift in the process and sensitize it, that its vote is mightier than any so-called ‘powerful people’ in power politics.”

I must remind you that we are on the side of “Positive Change” in a war with continuity of “Systemic Neglect”.
Let me pause and ask few questions:

Do we want to continue seeing Freetown as filthy as it is?

Do we want to continue receiving power outage in the
capital city of our country and no good drinking water?

Do we want to continue with the massive unemployment and poor wages in the country?

Do we want to continue with the poor health facilities in the country?

Do we want to continue with the poor road conditions in our beloved country?

Do we want to continue with the poor educational standards in a country that was once called the Athens of West Africa?

Do we want to continue with the high cost of living with false promises that nobody will go to bed hungry come 2007?
Do we? I believe the answer is NO!

The wind of “Positive Change” is blowing over the belly of the Peninsular Mountains of the West so hard that the S.L.P.P. leaders do not want us around. But it cannot stop there:
Let the wind of “Positive Change” blow over the meadows and planes across the nation!
Let the wind of “Positive Change” blow over the mineral fields across the nation! Let the wind of “Positive Change” blow over the coffee and cacao trees in the East, South and North!
And let the wind of “Positive Change” blow everywhere; including over the schools, over the colleges and over the universities!

What is blowing?
The wind of “Positive Change”!

What is blowing?
The wind of “Positive Change”!

What is blowing?
The wind of “Positive Change”!

I employ you all to come onboard and join this Movement of “Positive Change”

Positive! Change!

Government! Change!

PMDC! E-dae Insie!

Charles Margai! E-dae Insie Lek Banga

Peace, Love and Unity, and God bless you all.

Photo: Dauda Tombo Bangura, US-based PMDC heavyweight.

Photo credit: Awareness Times, Freetown.