Sierra Leone Bar Association Elects New Leadership Amid Controversy

Sierra Leone Bar Association (SLBA).jpg

By Alvin Lansana Kargbo

The Sierra Leone Bar Association (SLBA) held its Conference and Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Kenema on May 17-18, 2024, culminating in the election of a new Executive to lead the association for the 2024-2026 term. In a public notice issued on May 20, 2024, and signed by General Secretary, Alfred Paul Juwah, the SLBA announced the election results and the newly elected officials.

Mrs. Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara (nee Jabbi) was elected President after a highly contested race. Her campaign, themed “Raise the Bar” with a focus on Standards, Empowerment, and Welfare (#RaiseTheBar), garnered significant support within the legal community. She succeeds outgoing president Ms. Eddinia Swallow, whose tenure was noted for significant legal reforms, including the abolition of the death penalty and strengthening cyber laws.

In her acceptance speech, Madam Gento-Kamara expressed deep gratitude to the SLBA members and committed to working collaboratively to achieve her campaign’s goals. “I am exceedingly grateful to the membership of the Bar for electing me as President. I promise to work diligently with every member to achieve the #SEW Agenda,” she said, calling for unity among her colleagues.

The election process, however, was marred by disruptions. Reports indicated attempts to prevent the elections and disturbances that necessitated police intervention. Despite these challenges, Returning Officer, Francis Ben Kaifala, ensured the elections proceeded according to the rules.

Key clarifications from Madam Gento-Kamara’s campaign team highlighted that:

1. Adequate notice was given for the early start on the second day.
2. Proceedings commenced on time after a point of order was resolved.
3. A motion to amend the agenda, allowing members to return to Freetown post-elections, was adopted.
4. Nomination of returning officers faced refusals, leading to Commissioner Ben Kaifala overseeing the process alone.
5. Disruptions during the voting process caused chaos, requiring police intervention to restore order.

The new leadership team for the 2024-2026 term includes:

1. President: Mrs. Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara
2. Vice President: Sidikie Tommy, Esq.
3. General Secretary: Alfred Paul Juwah, Esq.
4. Assistant General Secretary: Abubakarr Sidique Kamara, Esq.
5. Treasurer: Satto Kobba (Ms.)
6. Assistant Treasurer: Yoko Mahiteh Brewah (Ms.)
7. Public Relations Officer: Alfred Kamanda, Esq.

The SLBA’s new Executive remains committed to upholding the Association’s objectives and calls on all members to adhere to the rule of law. Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara’s campaign team also emphasized their dedication to addressing the Bar’s interests and correcting any misinformation circulating on social media.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here