By Aaron Parker, Freetown, Sierra Leone. December 29, 2023.
An unexpected joint operation between the Sierra Leone Police and the Military led to the establishment of a checkpoint on Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma Avenue, the primary entrance to the former president’s premises in Makeni.
This action has piqued the interest of residents and visitors in the northern regional city, sparking inquiries regarding its purpose and implications.
Addressing queries from Awoko Newspaper, Sergeant John Abass Kamara, the Regional spokesperson for the Sierra Leone Police in the northeast, shed light on the checkpoint’s intent. He emphasized that the installation forms part of a swift response strategy aimed at safeguarding citizens’ safety and ensuring security in the area.
“Our collaboration with the military is focused on locating individuals wanted in connection with the failed attempted coup on November 26,” stated Sergeant Kamara, highlighting the concerted efforts of security forces involved in this operation.
While assuring the public, particularly the residents of Makeni, Sergeant Kamara appealed for cooperation with the police in apprehending the suspects while maintaining normal daily routines.
Eyewitness accounts from locals navigating Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma Avenue indicated that authorities conducted identification checks and bag searches. However, as of now, no suspects have been detained, and the police have not provided a timeline for the checkpoint’s duration.
Efforts by Awoko Newspaper to solicit comments from the former president’s office regarding this development were declined due to security considerations.
Amidst speculation suggesting the road’s potential use as an escape route for individuals sought in connection with the failed coup, Makeni remains relatively calm. Joint security forces, comprising police and military personnel, continue their vigilant operations at the checkpoints in ongoing efforts to ensure public safety and security.
© All rights reserved - 40 Acres Canada - 2006