Dr. Joe Demby said the term of the current SLPP national officers has expired and their insistence to continue holding office and conducting party activities like elections also contravenes a Supreme Court Order which according to him states that elections for national officers should be done by the National Executive Council made up of ex-officio members of the party.
The former Vice President was apparently angry that he wasn’t invited to the NEC meeting of 8th and 9th January 2016 and according to him, the national officers have exhibited a “blatant show of disrespect” for other senior members of the party.
Platinum Media reports that the said current executive had stage-managed the elections of lower level officers for an election slated for the 15th January 2016 to ensure they are in turn elected by these stooges at the party’s national convention.
“My understanding is that the National Officers whose term ended in August 2015 cannot conduct any level of election in a fair and transparent manner, because: it is those lower level officers that will eventually vote for them to retain their present positions or higher…Votes conduct in the meeting were full of irregularities” Demby wrote.
Joe Demby believes the recent election of some lower level officers of the party was a shame and called on the PPRC to intervene and restore order in a party that is now synonymous to chaos, “mammy cuss” (profane and offensive language) and egocentrism.
It is not clear which warring faction of the SLPP Joe Demby belongs to but his recent reaction further shows the deepening and messy crisis that has engulfed the SLPP.
Dr. Joe Demby was appointed Vice President after the SLPP won the 1996 elections but was later dumped by the late President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah when the latter was restored to power by West African troops (ECOMOG) after the AFRC coup of May 1997.
President Kabbah and some members of his government returned home from exile in neighbouring Conakry, Guinea in 1998. Demby was replaced Solomon Berewa. There was no official reason for Demby’s sacking but sources say he was not very close to Kabbah after the coup. Most of the Ministers who were not with Kabbah in Conakry were dropped after he was restored to power.
Dr. Joe Demby, 82, is a medical doctor and one of the prominent SLPP elders in Kenema district where a street, Joe Demby Street, was named after him in Kenema town, capital of the eastern region. He was very close to and worked with the late civil militia leader Chief Hinga Norman during the civil war.