By: Mohamed M. Sesay (Lucky)
Descendants of Gallinas Chiefdom in the Pujehun District have reached out to the Courier with a strong worded accusation against the Chief Whip of the Fifth Session of the Fifth Parliament of the Second Republic of Sierra Leone Hon. Dixon Rogers. Honorable Dixon Rogers is a Member of Parliament representing citizens of constituency 100. Hon. Dixon Rogers is also chairman for the Committee on Transparency and Accountability which has direct supervision over the work of Statistics Sierra Leone.
The concerns from the descendants of Gallinas Chiefdom which is in the form of a speculative rumor against Hon. Dixon Rogers is that, Hon. Rogers has been untiringly using his influence and status as direct parliamentary supervisor of Statistics of Sierra Leone, to unjustifiably destabilize one of the most densely populated Chiefdoms in the District (Gallinas), in order to mollify his political aspiration.
According to concerns from the descendants, the Chief Whip of the Fifth Session of the Fifth Parliament, has been doing his clandestine political mission by influencing or trying to influence the 2021 Mid-Term Population and Housing Census, in order to de-amalgamate constituency 100 comprising Gallinas Chiefdom and that of Perri Chiefdom. The alleged de-amalgamation is perceived to create a smooth ride for Hon. Dixon Rogers’ 2023 Parliamentary ambition. The 2015 Population and Housing Census result projects Constituency 100 with a population of 54,691. Out of that population for both Chiefdoms (Gallinas and Perri), Gallinas carried a lion share of the population. Therefore, in the Courier’s estimation, Gallinas should be the ideal Chiefdom to stand aloof as a constituency if at all there is need for a de-amalgamation of the constituency.
The Section Chief of Blama Massaquoi in the Gallinas Chiefdom Rodney Lahai Kamara was very bold in his quest of sending this message through the Courier in the City of Blama Massaquoi.
He dilated that they have been receiving a spiteful rumor that Hon. Dixon Rogers fondly called “DECO”, is trying to consecrate and certify his political red zone by destabilizing Gallinas Chiefdom and giving concrete political empowerment to Perri Chiefdom which happens to be the seat of power.
Chief Rodney Lahai Kamara also intimated the Courier that, Gallinas and Perri chiefdoms amalgamate as one constituency. Thus, the rumor to remove two sections from Gallinas Chiefdom has been a “heart-beaten” concern to descendants of the Chiefdom. “We don’t have problem for the division but the only problem we have is the ill-disposed and politically motivated move to remove two from the five sections of Gallinas and add it to Perri which already has seven sections.
Rodney Lahai Kamara considers such move to have painstaking consequential consequences on Gallinas chiefdom in terms of Chiefdom Governance and Development. He cited an instance that before this time, Gallinas Chiefdom (Blama Massaquoi), used to be ward 365 which consist of three sections in the Gallinas Chiefdom and two communities from Kpaka Chiefdom.
Thus, the addition of two communities from Kpaka Chiefdom to be part of ward 365 had always created an issue in terms of planning developmental event as a ward.
Chief Rodney Lahai Kamara confessed to the Courier that, they have been marginalizing the two Kpaka communities in terms of development for the simple reason that they are from different Chiefdom. On the other side of the coin, Kpaka Chiefdom has also been ostracizing Gallinas Chiefdom from most developmental programmes on the same premise that Kpaka is also a standalone Chiefdom.
Chief Rodney Lahai Kamara also admonished that Gallinas Chiefdom is a Mining area which has the compelling tendency for migration that gives deserving advantage for the rapid growth of the existing population of the Chiefdom. He requested for Gallinas to stand aloof as a separate constituency other than deducting two sections from Gallinas and add it to Perri just because of one political actor who wants to fulfill his political glorifications.
He further elucidated that Gallinas Chiefdom will be disadvantaged tremendously in terms of chiefdom governance. He reiterated that Perri which is the seat of power for Hon. Dixon Rogers will focus most of his developmental activities in Perri as it has been happening current. Also the remaining three sections of Gallinas will be incorporated into Kpaka Chiefdom which according to Lahai Kamara will create further disadvantage and a total destabilization to one of the most populated Chiefdoms in the District (Gallinas).
“We want to let government know that this is the unfortunate rumor we are having for a prompt action. Because if this rumor come to past, then Gallinas Chiefdom will be disadvantaged in terms of governance and development. Our current Honorable for this constituency Hon. Dixon Rogers is the one trying to influence the census result for the destabilization of Gallinas Chiefdom just to fulfil his political dream”, said Chief Rodney Lahai Kamara.
Mohamed Foday Sillah a student of Njala University Pujehun Branch and also a community volunteer teacher attached at R.C Primary School in Blama Massaquoi is also a descendant of Gallinas Chiefdom.
He equally asserted to the Courier that there is always an element of truth in any rumor which is the more reason they want to act on such monstrous gossip. He affirmed that indeed Statistics Sierra Leone has certain criteria which inform the de-amalgamation of any constituency.
He however maintained that Gallinas being a very big Chiefdom with appreciable population density, should stand on its own rather than taking two sections from the Chiefdom and add it on to either Perri or Kpaka Chiefom as the case may be.
Now the Couriers’ qualm in this whole drama is to critically and logically put Statistics Sierra Leone under integrity and credibility test in conducting self-minded census in this country.
Let me put this in a conditional tense, if a powerful political actor can be in his comfort zone and dictates the outcome of the Census result just to accomplish his political mission, then that puts the credibility of census into opprobrium. The constitution mandates Statistics Sierra Leone to conduct census and such conduct of national census should refrain from dancing to the tune of political actors for their self-centered political fulfilment.
As a mediated communicator, the Courier did justice to the Chief Whip of the House of Representatives from constituency 100 by seeking his response regarding such allegations. I called Hon. Dixon Rogers exactly at 13:06 GMT of which he instantaneously refuted all of the allegations levied against his personality.
“How can I influence census result when the census has been conducted and the result is now out to the public domain? If you don’t get the number you don’t have it and I have no power to influence Census result”. These were the direct words of Hon. Dixon Rogers repudiating the entire allegations against him.