By. Sorie Gbengbo
Political harassment and intimidation have become the order of the day in Sierra Leone, as political parties are faced with stiff resistance to effectively participate in the political space in the country.
Over the past years the ruling SLPP government has been bent on intimidating and harassing opposition critics in order to silence them for talking or force them to join their party. This has been exhibited by the arrest and detention of many political critics in the country, including but not limited to the popular musician Alhaji Bah who is popularly known as (LAJ), and a controversial political commentator and youth activist by the name of Hassan Williams.
Williams is notorious for being arrested, molested, and beaten for his stance on national issues and for strongly opposing the ruling SLPP government.
It is rumored that the ruling SLPP government have made several offers to Williams as a way of persuading him to join the ruling party but they have failed woefully as Williams continue to expose the government.
It was reported that Williams was spotted wearing an opposition APC t-shirt along the central business district in Freetown, this angered thugs from the ruling SLPP party who attacked the young man beat him up to an extent that he would have lost his life had it not been for the swift intervention of other youths.
According to Ibrahim Sesay who was present at the scene where Williames was beaten, he explained to this medium that when they ask Hassan Williams to report the matter to the police he said Williams told them that; “I have no trust in the police, I have reported several matters to them that involved my life been threatened or me being beaten, nothing comes out of it, and on several occasion I was arrested and detained for no justifiable reasons. So I don’t think the police will protect me no matter what”, Sesay explained.
These spontaneous incidents against Hassan Williams have left him with no choice but to be traveling in and out of the country in order to avoid the constant intimidation from the police and thugs.
Hassan Williams is a household name in Sierra Leone he was well known for his skillfulness in repairing phones, before he chose to engage in political activism.
There had been rumors within the circles of the ruling SLPP party that they were planning to silence Hassan Williams once and for all, since he had refused to join them and still continued to challenge the government. It is said that the thugs have deployed informants at the Lungi International Airport to monitor the arrival of Hassan Williams in Sierra Leone if he chooses to return.
This rumor has left close friends and family members worried about the safety of Williams if he chooses to return.
Abdulai Sesay told this medium that it is best for Hassan to stop coming to the country as the plans against him are not favorable. He maintains that his close friend who happened to be a member of the SLPP thugs have informed him that whenever Hassan returns they will kill him.
It is presently unknown the actual location of Hassan Williams all people know was that he was in Brazil for some time.