by Theo Nicol
Last week, we did get a bashing from the foreign media. The Africa Confidential Report and the Al Jazeera documentary on Africa Investigates, attempted to make nonsense of all the development that our country is going through at the moment, particularly in our fight against corruption.
The fight against corruption that is going on so robustly under the Joseph Kamara’ Anti-Corruption Commission came under attack from media that should help the fight and praise our nation for the many giant strides we have made as a nation some ten years after we ended a protracted eleven years rebel war.
It appears to me that the foreign media hardly sees anything good aboutAfrica. When they come here to report or even to investigate, they look for the ugly side of our country and beam their searchlight on that. They will never come here and report the progress we have made in road construction, in putting together structures that will make our country more democratic, our effort at reducing bottlenecks in business or even the new facelift that the Nigerian banks have given to the business district in Freetown.
Instead, they will take their camera to Kroo Bay and show it as if that is the way we all live in Freetown or Sierra Leone, in shanty slums. They will not go to IMATT and see the architectural wonder that Sierra Leoneans are constructing in their country. They will not show our lovely beaches and our waterfalls.
So I have concluded that the new colonialists are the foreign media, who aim to keep us down perpetually. That is why I am shocked that our own Sorious Samura has suddenly being brainwashed to think like every white foreign journalist would. I agree that they did a good job exposing corruption in the timber export business, but I am disappointed at the obvious doctoring they gave to their report just to put our government in bad light. True journalism means that one should be fair, accurate and balanced, so that one’s report does not suffer from lack of credibility.
Yes, we have some more way to go to get things fully right in our country. But any fair journalist will catalogue the efforts we are making to move ahead in line with best international practice, in almost all sectors of our national life.
We have improved our country’s image from the barbaric nature that it was and today, our country is considered as one of the major investors’ destination inAfricaand we do need genuine investors to come here and invest in the education industry, in commerce, in housing, in building factories, in mining and in agriculture. That has started happening and the foreign media will not focus on that except our government pays 50,000 to 100,000 US Dollar for a few page supplement in any of their newspapers or magazines. But when they want to damage our image, they do it for free.
There is still corruption in the country, admittedly, but there is also greater effort now, more than ever before to fight it. That must be acknowledge and projected by the foreign media if they have to be fair to our country.
We are a nation that is in a hurry to get out of the woods and anybody that cannot help us to do so should please leave us alone.
That is my view.