After over a year operating as a movement, the Unity Movement on Wednesday 25 October 2017 received its certificate as a registered party, from the Political Parties Registration Commission (PPRC).
Interim Chairman and Leader, Femi Claudius-Cole in a brief statement as she received the final certificate from the PPRC to operate as a fully registered political party.
She stated that she received the certificate like a woman long overdue in labour, but finally gave birth to twins. Femi Claudius-Cole a professional medical practitioner with over two decades of practice both within and outside of Sierra Leone. She noted that the journey has been long, but while the movement awaited final certification, a lot of activities has been going on, of which amongst was the mobilization of communities to come out and register during the voter registration exercise, and the second was a free medical outreach to various communities. During those eight months of criss-crossing the country “I was shocked to see the huge turnout of people, especially in rural communities, who because of poverty cannot access medical services, and as a result these innocent people live and die with their ailments”.
Talking about the free health care programme introduced by Government in 2010, the aspiring presidential hopeful shook her head in disappointment.” The idea is good but I feel for the people, because the implementation and monitoring mechanisms is making the scheme hopeless, and for this reason international reports continue to say that more women are dying during child bearing in Sierra Leone. The health sector can be much better and improved through a well coordinated system”.
Now that the Unity Party is fully registered, and will soon hold its convention, if successful and become victorious in the 2018 elections, it has three, short term interventions: health, education and job creation.
Femi Claudius-Cole furthered that during her health outreach interventions, it was discovered that in some communities there is a high rate of HIV infection, while in other communities malaria, typhoid and other ailments was common. “Education over the years has dropped and so much investment has been made, but children continue to do poorly in exams. No child should be on the streets hawking or seen moving around with a disabled parent or relative, every child of school going age, should be in school”. She added that the Ministry of Education and Social Welfare are turning a blind eye and without the children being educated, the country will not progress.
Claudius-Cole says no one should be left out in the country’s development process, as the name implies Unity Party, each and every Sierra Leonean is welcomed and together jobs can be created for the bulk of the country’s population who are young people. “Why should majority of farm produce harvested lay to waste, and we are screaming no jobs? It is time to review trade policies and open up trade with Africa, Asia and other parts of the world to better the economy, through investments that will directly benefit citizens, and take their minds off mischief”.
If there is a possible run off, will the Unity Party merge with other parties to form the next Government? On this issue the middle age aspirant was all smiles, and responded, “I have received several phone calls from both old and new political parties, but I fear of going somewhere that do not share the same vision and aspirations of Unity Party. Nothing is off the table, but I’m more comfortable losing on my own, with my head up high than history to repeat, like in 2007.
Dr. Claudius-Cole, despite her busy schedule of being a medical worker at the family’s private clinic, is now a new politician, with a new ambition and approach to development.
By Ade Campbell
October Friday 27, 2017.