Speaking to Africa Young Voices, one of the residents, Pa Alimamy Sesay explained that he has lived in Mogegba community for over forty years together with other elders, and that they used to produce charcoal at the said vast portion of lands, before officials of the Ministry of Lands, Country Planning and Environment grabbed it from them.
Pa Alimamy Sesay further disclosed that personnel attached to the Operational Support Division were later deployed on the said lands on the instruction of senior police personnel, including former ministers of the past regime, who according to him have built mighty houses on the lands in question.
He called on government and officials of the Ministry of Lands, especially the Minister, Dr. Denis Sandy to thoroughly peruse and digest documents relating to the said lands and how the present occupants acquired these lands.
“We raised the issue with the stakeholders of the former government on several occasions, but nothing positive was done in that direction,” Pa Alimamy Sesay lamented.
Another elderly man of Mogegba community, Alusine Kargbo said he has lived on the said land for over thirty six years, together with his family, but that he was taken aback, when officials of the Ministry of Lands including the then Minister, Diana Finda Konoymani led a team of armed police personnel who forcefully drove them away from the said lands.
“To our greatest surprise,” he went on, “a vast portion of the said lands were sold to an Indian business man who owns a rum-producing company at Kissy in the east end of Freetown,” he said.
He appealed to the Minister of Lands, Dr. Denis Sandy to come to their aid, noting that they are Sierra Leoneans, and that they should not be treated like foreigners in their place of birth.