Former president of Sierra Leone Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma, has hosted Michael von der Schulenburg who is the former Executive Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General in Sierra Leone. The two met at Mr. Koroma’s residence in Makeni City.
Mr. Schulenburg served in Sierra Leone from 2009 to 2012, during what has been described as a politically difficult period of the former president’s time in office, which saw numerous violent clashes between supporters of the two main parties – APC and the SLPP.
Mr. Schulenburg is visiting Sierra Leone on the invitation of the current President Dr. Julius Maada Bio, who last week awarded Mr. Schulenburg with one of the highest national honors bestowed on the country’s citizens.
Speaking on his arrival in Makeni City on Saturday 25th January 2020, to a warm welcome from former President Koroma, Mr. Schulenburg expressed his appreciation for the former president’s decision to graciously agree to meet him, as he had requested the meeting at a short notice.
Mr. Schulenburg said he had driven all the way from Freetown to meet the former president in Makeni, as a sign of the abiding respect and deep admiration he has for Former President Ernest Koroma.
Mr. Schulenburg said it is no surprise that the former president is being utilized so well by the International Community, given his credentials built whilst he was in office.
Mr. Schulenburg emphasized the need for continuous dialogue among Sierra Leoneans, and reminded of how Africa has a very unique cultural system of conflict resolution, known as ‘Palaver Hut’ which encourages and promotes dialogue.
Former president, Dr. Ernest Bai, said his doors in Makeni will always be open to Mr. Schulenburg, and thanked him for his visit.
Koroma expressed his hope that the peace, stability, sustainable development and the very admirable practice of democracy which Sierra Leone as a country, had come to be known, will continue to serve as the hallmark of governance with which Sierra Leone should be associated.
Former President Koroma agreed with Mr. Schulenburg on the importance of political dialogue, and used the opportunity to reiterate what he said has been his position since leaving the Presidency, after serving his constitutional two terms.
“As I stated in my Handing Over Notes to H.E. President Bio and which I have re-stated at every opportunity since then, I am always ready to assist in any way possible to promote peace, unity and development in Sierra Leone,” former President Koroma told Mr. Michael von der Schulenburg, as he escorted his guest back to his vehicle for his return to Freetown.