Sierra Leone: Bio Must Go!

Defeat the Police and State Forces on the Streets!

For an Indefinite General Strike to Bring Down the Neo-colonial Government in Sierra Leone!

Statement of the Revolutionary Socialist Vanguard (RSV), Nigerian Section of the RCIT, 15th August, 2022,


Freetown is locked in tensions from pockets of protests following last Wednesday’s clash between protesters and police and other state forces in what can be described as the deadliest civil unrest since the end of the civil war in 2002 Sierra Leone.[1] The Maada Bio government despite the loss of 21 civilians has cast aspersions on the protests calling it a “well-machinated act to remove a legitimate government“, “failed coup”, etc.

New York Times reports rather that “Female street vendors who last month staged peaceful gatherings against the soaring cost of living were joined on Wednesday by hundreds of political protesters, who clashed with the police and demanded the president’s resignation over the government’s perceived failure to confront rising fuel and food prices. At least four police officers were killed, according to a police statement, and an unknown number of protesters also died in clashes, according to Sierra Leone’s information minister and multiple news reports.

After a day of calm on Thursday, protesters demonstrated again on Friday in Freetown, the capital city, with police firing live ammunition at the crowds, according to videos shared on social media. The extent of injuries was unclear. The protests in this West African nation of eight million people underscored how rising inflation, the impact of the war in Ukraine and the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic have had cascading effects on social stability across the world.

In Sri Lanka, months of protests fomented by economic hardship and fuel and food shortages forced President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to step down last month. Countries like Ghana, where the country’s inflation rate reached its highest level in nearly two decades last month, and Ecuador, among many others, have also been roiled by protests.

In some of the world’s poorest countries, like Sierra Leone, the effects of the latest food crisis have been piled onto older challenges — particularly the aftermath of Ebola outbreaks and the coronavirus pandemic, among others. But beyond economic hardship, a growing crackdown on freedom of expression and the right to protest has fueled discontent in Sierra Leone, aggravating this week’s tensions, said Alhaji U. N’jai, a Sierra Leonean social and political analyst.

“Wednesday was the tipping point of something that had been brewing for months,” said Mr. N’jai, a professor of environmental science at the University of Sierra Leone’s Fourah Bay College. “That brought together groups that are completely different, but they were unified by economic difficulties.” “[2]

Therefore, the unrest in Sierra Leone is a recurring decimal in many countries arising from the costs of living crises which is a stubborn feature of the collapse in the world capitalist economy. Furthermore, the fact that Putin’s invasion of the Ukraine is a major factor in this new stage of capitalist crises shows that these protests have roots in the national oppression of the semi-colonies by imperialists from both East and West. The effects of imperialist plunder in Sierra Leone has been far-reaching:

Sierra Leone had enjoyed relative stability since it emerged from a civil war between 1991 and 2002 that, according to the United Nations, left at least 70,000 people dead and 2.6 million displaced. But it remains among the world’s poorest countries despite its extensive mineral resources. Nearly 30 percent of Sierra Leone’s population suffers from chronic hunger, according to the World Food Program, and more than half its population lives below the poverty line.

Food inflation had already increased because of the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, but it reached new highs this year. The cost of fertilizers has more than doubled over the past year, according to Sierra Leonean farmers consulted by the nongovernmental humanitarian agency Care. Last month, Sierra Leone’s central bank removed three zeros from its bank notes, hoping to restore confidence in the currency and reduce the amount of paper money in circulation while keeping its value unchanged. Sierra Leone is one of 60 countries identified by the United Nations as struggling to afford food imports, according to a leaked email seen by Politico. Food accounts for about a third of merchandise imports in Sierra Leone.“[3]

Little wonder Nana Akufo Addo, the Ghanaian president after he was done in by the mass protests in Ghana had to demand for reparations from his colonial masters.[4] But reparations can never be complete without dismantling the system of imperialism and neo-colonialism as one might be forced to ask what the reparations are for — the atrocities of the past or that of the present. This is not to say that the call for reparations is incorrect, for one thing such calls coming from Akufo Addo are merely, performative, albeit, calls for reparations form part of the body of anti-imperialist bourgeois democratic demands like the cancellation of debts.

All reparations from imperialist countries are welcome at any minute so long as anti-imperialists recognise that the main goal is to totally destroy the system of imperialism which is impossible without ending capitalism at home.

Given the contagious nature of the protests, Nigeria, other West African countries and semi-colonial countries are bound to be next. Revolutionaries, progressive and oppressed nationalists must support these uprisings as they are harbinger of the undoing of the imperialist world order. Authentic socialists must combine bourgeois democratic demands with the Socialist program.

Down With the Maada Bio Government in Sierra Leone! End Child Labour and the Imperialist Exploration of Africa’s Mineral Resources!

Cancel All Foreign and Domestic Debts! For International Food and Medicine Aid for the Poor in Sierra Leone and throughout Africa!

For an Indefinite General Strike to Unseat Capitalism in Sierra Leone! For A Public Employment Program Planned by the Workers and Poor Peasants! Expropriate The Multinationals and Local Bourgeoisie Without Compensation! Nationalise Mineral Industry Under Workers Control!

Out with all imperialist troops in West Africa! Down With AMISOM! Defeat the Wagner Group in Mali! Freedom and Self Determination for all Oppressed African Nationalities!

For A Workers’ and Poor Peasant Government in Sierra Leone! For A Confederation of West African Socialist Republics!




[3] See [2] above