Statement by Campaign for Good Governance on the Spate of Violent Protests Across the Country

Campaign for Good Governance (CGG) is gravely concerned about today’s incidents ofviolent protests across the country especially in Makeni, Magburaka and in the East end of Freetown.

We have seen disturbing videos on social media of brutal killings and violence meted out on both security personnel and civilians and destruction of properties in several parts of the country.

CGG condemns in the strongest term, any acts of violent protest and subversion by citizens. While we recognize the right of citizens to engage with leadership, we do not believe that such engagement or demand for accountability should take any violent or subversive form. The killing of police officers and burning of public buildings and private residences is not a legitimate form of expression of dissent by citizens.

CGG therefore calls on citizens to respect the laws of the country and to abide by the current imposed measures. Citizens should not take the law into their hands but rather utilize the legitimate avenues provided to express their grievance.

We also believe in equal measure, that the police should enhance citizens’ right to expression of opinions and grievances with leadership. We believe that creating such avenues is critical to defusing the tensions and disaffection of citizenry.

CGG therefore calls on the government of Sierra Leone to engage constructively with all groups and to ensure that citizens’ voices are heard and respected at the very least. We believe that dialogue and engagement with all concerned groups is even more critical now.

CGG welcomes the imposition of national curfew as an immediate and temporary measure to stem the violence across the country. CGG calls for constitutional adherence in the emergency measures and for executive actions to be compliant with the law.