One of the Aspirant contesting for the position of National Chairman in the SLPP, Alex Bonapha, has said that the party stands the risk of losing the 2023 Presidential election if Dr. Prince Alex Harding or Jimmy Batilo Songa becomes the party’s next chairman ahead of the May 2021 SLPP Convention.
Bonapha made this statement in Kailahun whilst canvassing support from delegates to see reason in electing him as the right choice or candidate that has what it takes to unite the party and make the necessary deliverables.
At the well-attended declaration of intent ceremony at the newly constructed SLPP party office in the District, stakeholders said that they elected Dr. Prince Harding, but he has disappointed them, and this is all the more reason that they have unanimously decided to elect their own son.
Clad in white African dress, Mr. Alex Bonapha revealed that for three years now the SLPP has been in turmoil, that for three years now the party has not produced a membership card, that for three years now the party has not produced a financial statement, that for three years now the party has not attracted new members, that there is no respect for the Elders’ Council, and recalled the toxic animosity between the late former Vice President, Mr. Solomon Berewa and Mr. Charles Margai that led to the defeat of the party; reiterating that the party would be the biggest loser if such should happen again.
According to Mr. Alex Bonapha, President Julius Maada Bio will unite and bring peace in the party, and commended Dr. Prince Harding and Mr. Jimmy Batilo Songa (the two other candidates), but warned that the party would lose the next elections if any of them wins the National Chairmanship position.
Mr. Alex Bonapha articulated, “I will lay the foundation to raise Le1 billion yearly for the party, will keep the party in governance for the longest period. I was below 30 years when former President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah awarded me with the Order of the Rokel. I fought the Ebola pandemic. My leadership will be dynamic with a vision. I will delegate responsibilities to elders and establish a Grievance Redress Mechanism. Furthermore, I will make peace and encourage all members who have left the party to return. Please join the winning team.”
He commended all for coming from different parts of the country and abroad to grace the event and for believing in his vision, assuring that he has a very wide network, that he is the servant leader, that 2024 will be smooth for the party, concluding that Kailahun has been supporting other Districts, but now is their time and assured that they would remain loyal to the SLPP.
Earlier, the SLPP District Young Generation Leader, Mr. Abu Senesie, introduced the chairman of the ceremony, Mr. Gbassay Ngobeh.
Kailahun District Town Chief appealed to the party’s national delegates to vote for Mr. Alex Bonapha, and observed that the District has suffered a lot, that the District will determine the fate of the party and that if he wins the National Chairmanship, Mr. Alex Bonapha will benefit the entire country.
The Chairman of SLPP, Kailahun District, Gbassay Chuckie, revealed that as chairman of the District Council, Mr. Alex Bonapha won five bye-elections, and that he is a national asset, believes in the vision of His Excellency the President and pledged their unflinching loyalty and support to him.
Mrs. Navo Kaikai, a former Member of Parliament and relative, described Mr. Alex Bonapha as articulate, mature and that he meets all the criteria for the national chairmanship, is a unifier, socialite, cuts across all barriers, is a man of the people, always visits the District, is a household name, and appealed to delegates to solidly vote for him.
The SLPP Constituency Chairman, Kailahun District and Coordinator for COVID-19, Mr. Feika Murray, reiterated that Kailahun District and not Mr. Alex Bonapha wants the SLPP National Chairmanship, affirming that “no Kailahun no SLPP,” that the District has been loyal to the SLPP at its own detriment, that they have the best party office in the country, that the District asked Mr. Alex Bonapha to contest for the position because he would defend them and the country.
On behalf of the District, the Bonapha family humbly accepted the honor.
The Clerk of Parliament, Mr. Paran Tarawalie, the SLPP Chairman for Constituency 125, Western Area, Mr. Balay, Foday Fofanah, SLPP Public Relations Officer, Tonkolili District, the SLPP Kono District Women’s Leader and other stakeholders nationwide, expressed similar sentiments, asserting that if the Leader of the party is from the South of the country, the Chairman should be from the East, underlining that the national executive should be regionally balanced.
Singing and cultural performances climaxed the ceremony.
By Mackie M. Jalloh