One of the more memorable social media spectacles of the past election in Sierra Leone was the public defection of Sierra Leone Peoples Party North America (SLPPNA) strongman S. K. Bayoh to the National Grand Coalition (NGC) Just a few months before the election. Mr. S. K. Bayoh, a strong supporter of Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella at the time felt so angered at Kandeh's inability to clinch the SLPP presidential candidacy that he decided to defect from SLPP in a very public and dramatic fashion.
|New Jersey SLPP welcome|
A repentant Bayoh
In a now infamous video clip he recorded specifically for the event, a video that could be a very Drserious contender for a dramatic award consideration, Mr Bayoh, in full SLPP regalia, gave his personal history in SLPP and the reasons why he thought the SLPP no longer had his support. He then painstakingly removed every bit of SLPP paraphernalia that he had on him and proceeded to don the ornaments and colors of Kandeh's Yumbellas NGC party.
Unfortunately, it seems as if Mr. S. K. Bayoh's romance with the NGC was as unfulfilling as it was brief. In a new video he posted this past weekend on social media before heading out to a SLPP celebration event in New Jersey, Mr. S. K. Bayoh, in full prodigal fashion, has announced resignation from NGC and his return to SLPP, the party he claims he has always belonged to. He promised to make an elaborate video this Monday detailing his reasons for leaving the NGC and coming back home to his beloved SLPP.
However, at the public SLPP event in New Jersey, S. K. Bayoh gave some hints as to why he thought his short personal sacrifice for NGC had been for nothing, focusing mainly on the ingratitude of Dr. Yumkella. Mr. Bayoh lamented that from the time he lost the Presidency and became an MP, Dr. Yumkella had not personally called him to thank him, Mr. Bayoh, for his enormous personal role in NGC campaign. He vowed he had more to say and of course we are eager to listen.
The members of SLPP New Jersey gave Mr. S. K. Bayoh a welcome befitting a repentant member who had lost his way in the midst of the NGC euphoria.
Opinions within SLPPNA are however split about the rapidity with which S. K. Bayoh has abandoned the NGC ship. Some people state that if NGC had won, S. K. Bayoh may not have quickly abandoned the party even if he had not gotten a personal call from Kandeh, but would have stayed. Others are of the opinion that a lot of then SLPP and now NGC members captivated by the allure of Dr. Yumkella particularly in North America should be welcomed back to the SLPP fold. The party needs more hands on deck to ensure future electoral victories.
As SLPP eases into the driver's seat in Sierra Leone, there are bound to be more defections from other parties and the return of some past defectors. It is just the Sierra Leone way, some people always want to be near the seat of power. SLPP should accept them, as our people say, "there is no bas forest forest to throw away a bad family member. You just have to accept them for the sake of family and continue sleeping with one eye open.