Monday, July 18, 2016

Culture Clashes Lead to Fatalities in Bonthe as Local Youths go on the Rampage

Bonthe
Over the weekend in Bonthe, arguably the most peaceful area Sierra Leone, a group of youths went on the rampage over a minor incident that resulted in clashes between some misguided youths on the island and soldiers stationed there, resulting in fatalities. It is reported that at least two people were killed yesterday in skirmishes between the youths and some soldiers stationed in the area, with some of the soldiers sustaining minor injuries.

The whole incident started with a quarrel between two young people on the island, one Michael Jikpama and a lady called Esther Senesie. During the quarrel Esther sucked her teeth at Michael, an act that is traditionally considered extremely disrespectful in the area, especially if it is from a woman and directed against a man who has been initiated into the local Poro secret society. To add fuel to fire, Esther also told Michael that if he was a man, he should do what he wanted to do over the perceived insult.

Michael was so outraged by the challenge that he started mobilizing a group of male youths in the area, saying  that a woman had disrespected and challenged their society. The news of the apparent cultural affront soon quickly spread and a lot of enraged male youths quickly rushed and joined Michael and his rowdy crowd.

As news of the incident spread, the local chiefs tried to intervene and told the youths that the days when people fought over such minor cultural infractions were over. They told them that the island was becoming a multicultural place and new people were moving to the area, including outside investors necessary to the development of the area, who did not necessarily know the customs. They told them that the world was changing and the aggrieved youths should just overlook the incident.

However, Michael and his now growing gang did not listen and continued mobilizing angry youths in the town, with a plan to attack the lady and all those they perceived as her defenders. The news got to the security  personnel on the island and the ONS went on radio and warned the youths to desist from any action that would compromise the peace and security of the areas. He told them that if they had any grievances they should convey them through the legal channels. The mayor,who was away, also reportedly called the youths and appealed to them for calm. However, the youths were now bent on defending their customs and were not prepared to listen to anybody.

The traditionally minded youths went to the residence of the ONS and severely beat his wife, and also attacked a soldier there. A group of over one hundred irate local youths also started pelting the military personnel who were dispatched to the area with rocks. They soldiers fired some warning shots, but that just got the crowd more riled up and they started rusing the soldiers who fired into the crowd, leaving two dead and one wounded.

Tensions are still high on the island, but the quick action of the soldiers has brought some order and calm to the town. Authorities are still on the lookout for Michael and some of the key leaders of his gang.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Sierra Leone: Bleak Prospects in the Face of Abundant Opportunity.

Sierra Leone Diamonds
Bob Marley's aphorism, "in the abundance of water the fool is thirsty," which is probably the most memorable verse in his 70s hit "Rat Race," aptly describes the conditions prevailing in many Sub-Saharan countries today, roughly 50 years post independence. Sierra Leone us a poster child of all that is wrong with Sub-Saharan Africa.

How can a continent blessed with so much natural wealth and such a resilient people, be so poor in terms of human material development and progress? How can there be so much poverty and squalor in the face of so much mineral, agricultural and marine wealth. How can a country like Sierra Leone, with a population of only 6 million and some of the richest diamond deposits in the world, consistently rank among the poorest countries in the world and become only notorious for the severity of its natural and human conflicts and the weakness of its governance institutions.

Many young Sierra Leoneans cannot even imagine today that there was a period in Sierra Leone when the capital city Freetown had 24 hours of continuous electricity and that during those days, sporadic blackouts were met with cries of "blackout!" resounding through the main streets of that once beautiful city.

At the risk of waxing nostalgic, I sometimes tell some of my young friends that when we were growing up in Freetown in the mid 70s, it was a truly beautiful city, without the human and vehicle congestion that has blighted the face of the once hopeful metropolis. Freetown those days was without the poverty, squalor and sense of resignation that has come to define its population. I still remember nights when we would sneak out to see adults gyrating happily in bars to the tunes of Prince Nico's "Simplicity" and "Sweet Mother." In Grammar School I used to walk to Lumley Beach to study while watching the Atlantic waves rushing in. We thought things were bad then. It was the beginning of the nightmare.

The Road to the Diamond
District
Sierra Leone is at a crucial crossroads. The future of Africa will be a future of increasing population growth, depleting mineral resources, increased deforestation, the proliferation of virulent strains of drug resistant infections, a higher demand for public services and the potentially devastating consequences of global warming. It will be a future full of uncertainty, complexity, challenges and limited opportunities. At the threshold of this uncertain future, a country like Sierra Leone seems to not only be inadequately prepared, but most of the leaders seem to be blissfully obliviously of the potential implications of these challenges. The country seems to be headed into the future, unguided, like a running car that has lost the functionality of its steering.

If things continue as they are at the present, the future of Sierra Leone is truly bleak. However, all is not lost. Sierra Leone is a small country with excellent human capital. The country has over a decade experienced a massive brain drain of its educated citizens leaving for other countries, due mainly to conflict, the lack of employment opportunities, stagnant or declining real wages and a public sector job market characterized by nepotism, political patronage and tribalism.

In my discussions with a lot of Sierra Leone professionals in the country's scattered diaspora, many are prepared to take a substantial reduction in earnings to go back home and help put the country on a better path. However, job prospects for Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora have mostly been open to political allies of the leadership, most of whom lacked the skills needed by the country and headed back home to jobs for which they were highly unqualified and unprepared for. 

Late President Tejan Kabba
A Trusted Leader
The dismal performance of these diaspora returnees has just perpetuated the growing myth that most Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora are incompetent. A lot of local based professional have justifiable had to view their diaspora counterparts with scorn and contempt. It can however be safely said that there has been no concerted effort on the part of the current government to seek competent professionals for crucial positions. Employment opportunities have mostly been open to the loudest defenders of the ugly status quo. It has been a case of incompetence in, incompetence out. As Idrissa Conteh, one of Sierra Leone's finest journalist once said when we were together in school, "when there is not there, you cannot force there to be there." In computer terminology it is GIGO-Garbage in, garbage out.

However, Sierra Leone is a democracy. It is possible that the next leader of the country, whether they are from the ranks of the opposition or from the ruling party, will not have the primitive mindset of the current President, Ernest Bai Koroma, a man whose fondness for sycophancy is matched only by his affinity for regionalism. 

A few weeks ago, I was appalled by a set of interviews given on BBC by the new Information Minister Mohamed Bangura, a political opportunist whose glaring display of ignorance and lack of diplomatic fitness is matched only by his juvenile command of the English language. To have a fellow of such caliber masquerading as the information minister of our country is a bitter pill that many enlightened Sierra Leoneans now have to swallow. Even with all her negative history, this is the only time  in the history of Sierra Leone that ministers of government are among the lowest caliber of folks in the country. A few months ago the Deputy Minister of Social Welfare, a visually impaired musician, was openly insulting the parents of the substantive Minister in front of the employees of the ministry. It was the lower employees who were begging them to behave, appealing to them like two small children in the schoolyard playground. Even the President had no option but to let them go. If a new leader, whoever that happens to be, will just try to put the right people in the right positions, that would be a major step in putting the country back on track. It would be a step in the right direction.

But as of now, Sierra Leone is a vampire state subject to the whims of foreign vulture capitalists. In a vampire state, the leaders are like vampires or bats, sucking the lifeblood out of the masses. In Sierra Leone today, even in the midst of all the poverty and squalor, the President and those in his favor live like royalty, building mansions in the midst of shanty towns and tenement yards. The poor people are forced to contend with backbreaking labor for a currency whose value continues to decline by the hour. Many young people are forced to turn to alcoholism in order to blunt the impact of the grinding poverty. Many young women from respectable families are turning to prostitution to make ends meet. They do not even hide it anymore.

In a bid to attract foreign investment, Sierra Leone has had to contend with unscrupulous capitalists who negotiate terms that are only beneficial to those in power. The businessmen willing to invest in the volatile country have shored themselves against the uncertain business climate by negotiating contracts that have no benefit for the country either in the short or long term, but only act to mask the rape of the country by providing a semblance of employment. These much touted investors usually close down shop at the smallest whiff of uncertainty. Some just grab enough minerals to make some profit before they close down at the earliest opportunity.

Unfortunately, the destiny of Sierra Leone lies in the hand of voters shackled to the chains of tribalism. Even with the dismal performance of those in power, people will still vote for them because they either speak the same language or come from the same region. African leaders are the most blessed in the history of leadership. As long as you can identify your political outfit with a particular tribal identity, you can rob the masses blind and they will still vote for you. The vote will not be any show of support for your performance or policies, but a vote for a sentimental affiliation to the party. Until we find a way for our political parties to lose that tribal attraction, African democracy will continue to be government of "the brothers pretending to be for their brothers, while robbing everybody blind." It is a sad state, but that is the state of Sierra Leone today. Will things change? Only time will tell.

Sheku Sheriff




Monday, July 11, 2016

The Blog is Back!

Over the past year, I have had emails, calls and social media contacts from various fans of my weblog, the Segbwema blog. People wanted to know why the frequency of blog posts saw a steep decline. There was a partial hiatus of the blog, as I was engaged in several projects that did not leave me enough time to focus on the type of stories I usually like to explore from a neutral perspective. Also, with the proliferation of social media information outlets, it is very easy these days to get news in real time, as soon as an incident occurs. So unless a story is really worth exploring, the information vacuum that used to exist in the days before the mobile revolution simply doesn't exist anymore. However, the same problems that I am passionate about continue to exist and I think it is now time to lend my voice to the effort to bring reforms in governance and social justice in Sierra Leone.


Wednesday, June 8, 2016

A Sad Week in African Sports: Keshi and Ali Exit the Stage.

Steven Keshi
This has been some very tough few days for sports fans all across the African continent. Just yesterday, the African continent lost one of our greatest sportsmen. Steven Keshi, the Nigerian soccer maestro, who had won the African Nations Cup both as a player and later as the coach of the Nigerian national soccer team, the Green Eagles.

Apparently, the 54 year old African soccer legend had a sudden heart attack in Benin City, Nigeria yesterday and died rather quickly. Some of his acquaintances report that he had shown no sign of being sick before he started complaining of severe leg pain. He died while he was on the way to the hospital. 
Rufai, Oliseh, Keshi with 1994
African Cup of Nations

Stephen Keshi of Nigeria, Kalusha Bwalya of Zambia, the great Roger Milla of Cameroon and George Oppong Weah of Liberia, were African soccer pioneers who brought respectability and visibility to football in Sub-Saharan Africa, paving the way for many soccer players to move to the big leagues of Europe and the Americas. He spent the later years of his short life in the service of his country and led his country's national team twice as a coach. The continent will miss this great legend.

A few days before,  the "World's Greatest," Mohamed Ali, who did more than most to bring beauty to the brutal sport of boxing and who, against all odds, defeated the formidable George Foreman in Congo, the heart of Africa, on October 30, 1974, died on June 3, 2016, in Scottsdale Arizona, from a bout of pneumonia, after struggling for many years with the neurological disorder, Parkinson's disease.

Mohamed Ali
Though born in America, Mohamed Ali was popular on the African continent as a black sports icon, a civil rights activist and a flamboyant showman whose flashy style many African boxers at the time tried to emulate. 

In 1974, Mohamed Ali's popularity was sealed in Africa when on the invitation of Congo's former President Mobutu Sese Seko, a hedonist and megalomaniac, he fought heavyweight boxing sensation George Foreman in Kinshasa, in what is now modern day Democratic Republic of the Congo. 

Both Mohamed Ali and George Foreman were Olympic boxing gold medalists who had fought their way to the top of the heavyweight division. In 1967, Mohamed Ali was stripped of his world heavyweight title after he refused to be drafted into the US Army to fight in Vietnam, objecting on religious grounds. This action  caused him not only to be stripped of his boxing titles, but he was also suspended from boxing for 3½ years. 

During the time when Ali was away from the sport, the younger George foreman, after winning the 1968 Olympic gold medal, turned professional and easily demolished such notable heavyweights as Joe Frazier and Ken Norton. ultimately he stood alone, feared and revered at the top of the heavyweight division.
The Rumble in the Jungle

When Mohamed Ali challenged George Foreman in 1974, few believed Ali would win. Ali was 32 at the time and been away from the sport for a while, coming back in 1970 to be defeated by "Smoking" Joe Frazier. Foreman was 25, heavily muscled, built like a rock, with one of the strongest punches in boxing. 

Both men trained in Congo for the fight to acclimatize to the heat. On the fateful day, they had to fight at 4.00am in the morning Congo time, so that the American TV audience would be up to see the brawl. The rest as they say is history. After taking some heavy beating, Ali managed to produce a David and Goliath spectacle. He kept Foreman away with jabs, dodging Foreman's ferocious blows craftily. By the 8th round, Foreman was tired from throwing ineffective punches and Ali caught him with a right hook to the face, sending him sprawling to the canvas in front of thousands of adoring fans. The great Foreman was defeated both physically and psychologically, forcing him to retire prematurely from the sport of boxing.

The Ali Foreman fight, known as the "Rumble in the Jungle, is still one of the most popular fights in the history of boxing. Many years later, George Foreman returned to the sport of boxing and became the oldest Heavyweight Champion in history. Today George Foreman is a popular face on TV selling his grills and advertising for Meineke.

In later years Ali became a revered icon in America and much beloved around the world. In Africa his legacy will always live on.

Sheku Sheriff ©
Saint Paul, MN
6/8/2016

Monday, March 28, 2016

Former Tegloma Federation Board Chairman Emmanuel J. Sandi Laid to Rest

Mr. Emmanuel J. Sandi
This Monday evening, Mr. Emanuel J. Sandi, a long term employee of the State of New York and a former Chairman of the Board of Directors Tegloma Federation International, will be laid to rest at the Ascension Town Cemetery in Freetown, the Capital of Sierra Leone

Mr. Emmanuel Sandi retired about 6 years ago and decided to spend his retirement among his people in Sierra Leone, having spent several decades in Public Service in the United States of America. He rose to prominent positions in the city of New York. He lived during his retirement in his home district of Kailahun in Eastern Sierra Leone.

Mr. Sandi Honored by Tegloma
New York
The Tegloma community in the United States received news of the demise of the Former Board Chairman on Sunday February 28th, 2016. It was reported that Chairman Sandi passed away suddenly that sunday, during a brief visit from Kailahun to Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone.

The entire Tegloma community around the world was in shock at the news, as Chairman Sandi had been such a strong, kind and knowledgeable leader and had helped guide the organization from a focus on social and customary events, to a focus on charity, especially during the tough years preceding the civil war in his native Sierra Leone.
Mr. and Mrs. Sandi

Chairman Sandi was an exemplary leader and a great resource to the administrations he guided during his tenure. He was knowledgeable, patient, respectful and humble. 

As a Sierra Leone organization, Tegloma has had its fair share of conflicts, but during the tenure of Chairman Sandi, he work assiduously with the Tegloma administration to ensure that the flames of conflict were always quickly put out before they blew out of proportion. He was particularly cognizant of maintaining unity in the organization. During his tenure, divisive individuals felt alienated, bringing the organization into an era of rapid expansion and growth. Chairman Sandi and his vice and successor, Chairman Alhaji Alieu Mustapha, are among the most likable leaders Tegloma has had in its 40 year history. 

Alhaji Alieu Mustapha
The current Federation Board Chairman Abu Bhonapha is in Sierra Leone at the moment, partaking in the burial activities of his predecessor. During the memorial service for Chairman Sandi, Chairman Abu Bhonapha gave a glowing tribute, extolling the virtues of the late great man. Many former Tegloma executive members resident in Sierra Leone are also participating in the burial rites of the great man together with other notable figures in Sierra Leone. Burial activities are being led by the venerable Dr. Sama Banya, a notable figure in the history of Sierra Leone.
Chairman Bhonapha Paying tribute to
Pa Sandi


Mrs. Jeneba Bangura, a former Secretary General of Tegloma who is currently in Sierra Leone, reports that Pa Sandi was honored and given all the rites befitting a man of his stature. She reports that even though she was shocked and saddened by his sudden demise, she was proud of the way the great man had been honored by his people. She said that she was "so proud to have been mentored by Pa Sandi"
Mrs. Jeneba Bangura

The acting Secretary General of the Federation Board, Mr. Alfred Moi Jamiru informed the organization of the Board's decision to dedicate this day to Pa Sandi and asked for all to write tributes to the late leader. Mr Jamiru who was also Chairman of Tegloma Federation for four years, noted that Pa Sandi, "was a voice of wisdom and so many of us benefited from his wise counsel."
Alfred Moi Jamiru

The Secretary General of Tegloma during the time of Chairman Sandi, Dr. James S. Senesie, noted that, "Pa Sandi indeed was a servant of Tegloma. It is a sad day for us today.. He labored for this organization and invested both his time and money to make Tegloma what it is today. I pray God Almighty will accord him the heavenly reward meant for those who labor to help others."
Chairman Sandi is survived by his wife Rosemary M. Sandi and many children and grandchildren in the United States of America. Chief Emmanuel Sandi was fond of gardening and enjoyed playing soccer and tennis. He continued his gardening activity in retirement. He left a great legacy.

By Sheku Sheriff with details provided by Mrs.Jeneba Bangura.


Friday, February 5, 2016

My Visit to Sierra Leone: Part 1

Lungi-Freetown Ferry
I just came back from Sierra Leone. I went back home on a short visit after many years living abroad, or as they call it in Sierra Leone, "the diaspora." The saying "no place like home," sounds like an old cliche, but in all sincerity, no truer words were ever uttered. When as a nomad, which I am, you go back to the land where you were born, you get this strange feeling that this is where I belong. It is not even an African thing. I have been to many countries in Africa, but it is only Sierra Leone that completes me.

When I went to my village Nyandeyama, deep in the interior of Kenema district, everybody knew me.  Even the young ones who did not know me had heard about me. I was back in my element. I was back in the land of my birth. I was back in the place where I belonged. In Segbwema....... What can I say? I was back in my element, though the town had changed beyond recognition.

Nyandeyama

I had left Sierra Leone during a period of great bitterness, leaving behind a beautiful country blighted by war and untold human suffering. It was a period of insanity, a period when men temporarily took leave of their senses. It was a period in which violence became normal and death became commonplace. Sierra Leone today seems to have put that sad past behind. The people look happy, even in the midst of the grueling poverty and commerce seems to be really thriving. With Ebola over, everybody is back to their normal life, the struggle for survival.

Unemployment in Sierra Leone remains very high and the levels of poverty are just heartbreaking. But even in the midst of this terrible deprivation, there is an optimism that was absent in Sierra Leone just ten years ago. There is a general belief that the future will be better. The people thrive on hope and the solace of community. It was a beautiful feeling.

Having lived in Minnesota for many years, a land where people believe that the only hands in which you can trust your destiny is yours, it was sad to see the confidence the common people in Sierra Leone still had in the political class of the country. There are very few community development initiatives. Everybody blames the government. Sierra Leone communities, at the village or section level, meet for funerals, weddings, society initiations and other social programs, but communities do not meet to make their village roads better. The farmers' co-operatives of the past are either absent or exist only in few areas.
Mano Junction

When I went to my village Nyandeyama, I passed through the villages of Vaahun, Komende Station and Borbwehbu. Leaving Nyandeyama for Kenema, I came through Jormu Kafeibu, Nikabo and a spattering of other smaller villages. I was lucky that we had a trusty old Toyota. The roads to these villages were worse than I had left them years ago and some were truly dangerous. The people of the villages, including their section and town chiefs, do not even think of even getting the youths together to take some of the big stones off the road. The village roads are bad, everybody blames the politicians. Many top politicians in Sierra Leone have never even heard of Nyandeyama or Jormu Kafeibu, so how would they make these far off roads? Everybody seemed to be dancing in the dark.
When I told the relatives in my van that we could actually do some of this work ourselves, they thought I was crazy. "Unfortunately," I told them, it is not politicians who ply these roads everyday, it is ourselves. But I was like a methodist priest preaching to a congregation of catholics.
Segbwema Jaygay Power

So, until our politicians one day decide that the road to Nyandeyama is worth making, we will continue to seek treatment for the achy joints resulting from all the wobbling and shaking when traveling on bad roads, in these marginal lands.

The Okada, motorcycle transport, is now the only way to get to some of the villages. And the way I saw the Okada drivers maneuvering around the rocks and boulders on the roads, I firmly resolved that traveling on one of those contraptions to my village was just not on my immediate plan. Maybe I will try them on my next visit. I did ride one in Kenema though. The driver immediately told me that I had never sat on one of these before. I was sitting crooked. Back let me go back to the day I came to Sierra Leone, to Lungi International Airport.
Wesley Secondary School
My Alma Mater

My Air France Airbus landed in Sierra Leone from Paris an hour late. Where at most airports, only passengers and few airport personnel are allowed in baggage claims, at Lungi International Airport, as soon as the baggages get on the carousel, it seems as if everyone who has clearance gets into baggage claim. When the first of my bags arrived, a fellow who did not look like a traveler grabbed my bag with supreme confidence off the carousel and proceeded to quietly put it by his side. I walked up to him with even greater confidence and quietly took my bag.
"Is that your bag?" He asked.
"Is it yours?" I asked.
He faded away quickly, the embarrassment plastered all across his weather beaten face. I made no fuss.
With My Younger Brother

By the time we got to the ferry terminal at Lungi, the last ferry had departed for Freetown. As we had a Toyota van, we bought more fuel to take the long Port Loko route to Freetown. We generously gave lift to some travelers coming from Holland and their delegation. They had also missed the ferry. They were traveling with some relative who had come to receive them at the airport but had not brought a vehicle.
Kenema Plaza

So we traveled to Freetown, all our minds on some holiday makers from America who had died at the Rogbere bridge just two weeks prior. When we got to the bridge there was a bump in front of the bridge that could have been responsible for many accidents. We drove carefully on that bridge and drove slowly the rest of the way. The road was good all the way and many of the villages along the way had solar lights. It was a beautiful scene in the deep of the warm night.

There is one thing that is great these days about Sierra Leone. Many of the main roads have been repaired and tarred. The road from Freetown to Segbwema is truly great. Driving to Segbwema, which used to be a whole day's journey, could now be done in about three to four hours. The only reason you won't do it faster is the irritating speed bumps that are all over the road, before and after every big town. I know the speed bumps are for safety, but they are so many and so irritating, and could actually cause the same accidents they are trying to prevent, if a driver is not too careful.
But on the whole, traveling to the interior is now a happy affair and one of the signature achievements of the current President, Ernest Bai Koroma. Probably to remind the country of this achievement, every so often his beaming smile is on a sign post or a building with the slogan," Action Pass Intention."

Kenema
As a JC (Jus Cam), a term reserved for Sierra Leoneans resident abroad who occasionally go home to visit, I really enjoyed my short stay in Sierra Leone, though I went under sad circumstances. JCs are both loved, envied and sometimes hated in Sierra Leone, the latter because of their antics. However, people were extremely nice to me. I was a well behaved JC it seems.  I was neither obnoxious nor outrageous. I did the best I could to blend in.
Flew with Isha Sesay of CNN
Wow!

I stayed away from Freetown,the capital of Sierra Leone, for much of my  visit. I had initially intended to spend much of my time in Freetown, but the overpopulation, the traffic, the pollution, the dust and the lack of urban planning has made this once beautiful city into one big chaotic mess. It simply was not the place for me. I was not used to the frenetic pace.

The Bo School-My Alma Mater
Urban planning in Freetown seems to be virtually nonexistent. It seems as if people just buy lands and build houses in any direction that suits their fancy. You can look around a neighborhood and see houses facing in whichever direction. Many of the houses, built by affluent locals, politicians, and JCs, are truly beautiful. But it is beauty made truly ugly by lack of coordination. Another thing I noticed about Freetown was the dense smoke pollution that was everywhere, particularly in the Eastern part of the city. Why people will want to be burning garbage in such a densely populated city was a mystery I just couldn't fathom. The smoke casts a ghostly haze over the Eastern part of the city and sometimes it is difficult to breath. Western Freetown is still beautiful, but Eastern Freetown is like a large urban village. It is truly a tale of two cities.
To Be Continued..........,

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Saint Paul Minnesota Snow Emergency

SAINT PAUL HAS DECLARED A SNOW EMERGENCY.

Visit StPaul.gov/snow or Call 651-266-PLOW (7569) for complete information.

On 12/29/15 beginning at 9:00 P.M., all NIGHT PLOW ROUTES will be plowed. This includes all arterial or main streets posted with signs that say "NIGHT PLOW ROUTE" and one side of all north-south residential streets posted with signs that say "NIGHT PLOW ROUTE-THIS SIDE OF STREET".

On 12/30/15 beginning at 8:00 A.M. all DAY PLOW ROUTES will be plowed. This includes all non-posted east-west residential streets and the non-posted side of north-south residential streets.

Parking is banned until streets are plowed full width. Ticketing and towing will begin at 9:00 P.M. the day the snow emergency is declared and continues until parking restrictions are removed. For more information visit our website at www.StPaul.gov/Snow.

Please shovel your sidewalk to help those who have trouble getting around. If you are a corner property owner please shovel the walkways to the street. City ordinance requires you to keep your sidewalk free of snow and ice.

Si aad u heshid macluumaad, fadlan booqo bogagga luqadaha badan ee laga helo bogga internetka degdegga barafka www.StPaul.gov/snowlanguages.

Xav paub ntxiv ua Lus Hmoob, thov mus xyuas cov vas sab ua ntau hom lus sau txog kev kaus te kub ceev www.StPaul.gov/snowlanguages.

Para obtener información en español, visite las páginas web multilingües en el sitio web de emergencias causadas por la nieve en www.StPaul.gov/snowlanguages.

Please share this information with family, friends, neighbors, or co-workers!

Thank you!