During the visit one of the leaders in the of the Susuya, Alhaji Hassan Kamara said spoke about their gratitude to President Bio for appointing one of theirs as a minister. He believes this is appointment will empower their community.
“We want to thank President Bio for appointing a Susu as a full cabinet minister,” Kamara said.
After the formal introduction the minister thanked them for their support and prayers over the years. Ambassador Yumkella is the son of late chief Yumkella who was a leader among the Susu tribe for a long time.
Despite their congratulatory messages, the Susu people expressed their concerns over some of the challenges they face as a community. Alhaji M. M. Turay is the National Chairman of the Susu Progressive Union. The union advocates and supports its members and also embark on development projects to empower their community.
Alahji Turay said “We cannot pray at our central mosque because it has been politicized. This has been our problem over the last few years. Our tribal authorities are not working in our interest.”
In response to their complaints, Ambassador Yumkella said it is his duty as a member of the community to look in to the concerns they have raised.
“I am a minister for all, even though I am a Susu. So I feel obliged to look in to this because of that greater responsibility,” Ambassador Yumkella said.
Despite the promise to look in to the issues, Ambassador Yumkella cautioned the Susu Progressive Union and other members of the Susu community to be cautiously optimistic about their expectations.
“I cannot say we will solve your problem immediately. What I can do is to discuss with the minister responsible about your reservations about the process of getting your tribal leader,” Ambassador Yumkella said.
He also urged them to solve problems of political divide with greater understanding and mutual respect for each other.
“I will be happy if every Susu man becomes a member of the SLPP but I will not force anyone to. When it comes to being a Susu no party or side interest matter.”
The engagement ended with members of the community praying for the minister.