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Saidu Bah

Freetown, Sierra Leone
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About Saidu
Saidu Bah is a seasoned Freelance Multimedia Journalist based in Freetown, Sierra Leone, with a keen focus on investigative journalism. His work encompasses a range of critical issues including human rights, environmental concerns, socio-economic development, and breaking news. Bah's reporting is particularly noted for its in-depth coverage of environmental issues and natural disasters in Sierra Leone, such as the severe flooding in Freetown that led to numerous fatalities and a humanitarian crisis.

With a portfolio that includes bylines in various esteemed media outlets, Bah's contributions can be found via Getty Images, AFP News Agency, and Awoko Newspaper. His articles often underscore the country's struggle with environmental policy and wildlife conservation, bringing to light the challenges faced by the Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary. Through his work, Bah addresses pressing matters such as poaching, habitat loss, government inaction, and the critical endangerment of the Western chimpanzee.

Bah's journalism not only informs but also calls attention to the broader issues of deforestation and outdated conservation laws in Sierra Leone. His dedication to reporting on these subjects has made him a vital voice in the media landscape, as he continues to highlight the complex interplay between natural disasters and the urgent need for effective environmental governance in his home country.
Languages
English
Services
Fixing
Skills
Investigative Reporting
Portfolio

At the start of Sierra Leone's dry season in November, 26-year-old Adama Sesay sells fruits and vegetables at a busy market in the centre of the country's capital, Freetown. It's hard work, and one of the greatest challenges in her day is extreme heat.

The Complicated Start of a Life in Sierra Leone

06 Jan 2024  |  de Volkskrant
Hawa Kargbo, a 17-year-old girl from Sierra Leone, discovers she is pregnant, a condition fraught with danger in a country with one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. Despite attempts to terminate the pregnancy due to fear and societal pressure, she ultimately decides to keep the baby after multiple failed attempts. The article highlights the challenges faced by pregnant women in Sierra Leone, including access to healthcare, poverty, and lack of education on reproductive health. It also touches on the efforts to reduce global maternal mortality, which have stalled, and the particular vulnerability of Sub-Saharan Africa, where 70% of global maternal deaths occur. The story follows Hawa's journey through pregnancy, her struggles with healthcare access, and her aspirations to finish school and become a nurse.

Inside the ‘zombie’ drug epidemic sweeping West Africa

02 Jan 2024  |  The Telegraph
Sierra Leone is facing a severe epidemic of kush addiction, with the Sierra Leone Psychiatric Teaching Hospital being the only facility actively treating patients. The country's scarcity of mental health professionals, with only five psychiatrists for a population of 8.4 million, is inadequate to address the crisis. High youth unemployment rates, at 60 percent, are exacerbating the problem as many turn to kush to escape their difficult circumstances. Kush is as dangerous as heroin or cocaine, causing serious psychiatric issues, physical harm, and even death. The addiction is spreading across West Africa, with over a million people affected. Dr. Edward Nahim, a consultant psychiatrist, attributes the rise in addiction to a lack of jobs and opportunities, worsened by the economic impact of the Covid pandemic.

Inside the ‘zombie’ drug epidemic sweeping West Africa

02 Jan 2024  |  telegraph.co.uk
Sierra Leone is facing a severe epidemic of kush addiction, with the Sierra Leone Psychiatric Teaching Hospital being the only facility actively treating patients. The country's scarcity of mental health professionals, with only five psychiatrists for a population of 8.4 million, is inadequate to address the crisis. High youth unemployment rates, at 60 percent, are exacerbating the problem as many turn to kush to escape their difficult circumstances. Kush is as dangerous as heroin or cocaine, causing serious psychiatric issues, physical harm, and even death. The addiction is spreading across West Africa, with over a million people affected. Dr. Edward Nahim, a consultant psychiatrist, attributes the rise in addiction to a lack of jobs and opportunities, worsened by the economic impact of the Covid pandemic.

Thousands dance with devil Gbekie in Sierra Leone to celebrate the New Year

02 Jan 2024  |  de Volkskrant
In Yele, Sierra Leone, thousands celebrate the New Year with a traditional dance involving Gbekie, a devil figure representing communal spirit and love. The festivities include a river ceremony, offerings, and a masked Gbekie parading through the village, signifying blessings for the year. Secret societies, central to social structure and authority, have evolved with external influences, yet remain popular, especially in rural areas. The event draws participants from across the country and abroad, emphasizing the importance of celebrating life and community bonds.

Curfew Partially Lifted In Sierra Leone Capital After Deadly Clashes

27 Nov 2023  |  www.barrons.com
In Freetown, Sierra Leone, a curfew was partially lifted following deadly clashes that resulted in at least 19 fatalities. The violence began when armed assailants attacked a military armoury and prisons, leading to hours-long battles with security forces. Colonel Issa Bangura announced a manhunt for those involved, including current and retired soldiers. President Julius Maada Bio stated that calm had been restored and most perpetrators had been arrested, while ECOWAS and other partners called for constitutional order. The unrest has raised concerns of another coup in West Africa, a region recently plagued by such events. The US embassy expressed support for President Bio's call for national unity.

Manhunt after clashes that left nearly 20 dead

27 Nov 2023  |  www.lapresse.ca
Sierra Leone authorities are pursuing those responsible for Sunday's clashes in Freetown, which resulted in nearly 20 deaths, including 13 soldiers. The violence, involving rebellious soldiers, has raised fears of a coup in West Africa. President Julius Maada Bio assured the public that calm has been restored and most perpetrators arrested. The government has imposed a curfew and increased security measures. ECOWAS and Nigeria have shown solidarity with Sierra Leone. Citizens remain anxious, with some taking precautions and others expressing hope for peace and stability.

Palm oil's complex impact on Sierra Leone's Malen Chiefdom

08 Jul 2022  |  China Dialogue
The article discusses the transformation of Malen Chiefdom in Sierra Leone due to the establishment of oil palm plantations by Socfin Agricultural Company (SAC), a subsidiary of the Socfin Group. The land lease agreement with the government and local authority has led to conflict over land rights, inadequate compensation, and allegations of bribery and intimidation. Despite these issues, SAC has been awarded certification by the RSPO. The presence of SAC has impacted food security, with locals losing their subsistence farms and facing pollution from the plantation's operations. Attempts at conflict resolution have been unsuccessful, and the government's response to a critical report remains pending. The article also explores the environmental and social impacts of SAC's operations, including the loss of biodiversity, pollution of water sources, and the effects on local livelihoods. While some community members benefit from employment and development projects, others suffer from the loss of land and resources. The article concludes with the ongoing resistance from groups like MALOA, who seek fair renegotiation of the land deal.

Four months after the landslides that killed her husband and more than a thousand others, Mariama Kamara has returned to the mountainside that collapsed onto their home to live in an unfinished building. Kamara is one of hundreds of Sierra Leoneans recently kicked out of three government camps set up in the wake of the August 14 disaster, when heavy rains caused the partial disintegration of Sugar Loaf mountain, now a red rock scar looming over the country's capital.

312 dead as mudslides, flooding sweep through Sierra Leone capital

31 Jan 2020  |  www.timesofisrael.com
Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown, experienced severe flooding that resulted in at least 312 deaths and left over 2,000 people homeless. The flooding caused morgues to overflow and led to a frantic search for missing loved ones. The Red Cross confirmed the death toll and anticipated it might rise as they continued to assess the affected areas. Morgue technician Mohamed Sinneh reported receiving 180 bodies at Connaught Hospital, many of whom were children. The disaster was exacerbated by a partial hill collapse in the Regent area. The city, which is prone to annual flooding, faces the challenge of dealing with the humanitarian crisis in the aftermath. This disaster adds to the hardships faced by Sierra Leone, a country still recovering from the impacts of the Ebola virus outbreak and widespread poverty.

Fish accounts for 80 percent of the animal protein intake in the diet of Sierra Leoneans, according to official statistics. The fisheries sector employs 500,000 people, mainly working on traditional boats, out of a population of 7.5 million. It represents between 12 and 15 percent of gross domestic product. But the fish caught by locals are becoming ever more rare and ever smaller,

EXTRAORDINARY images show inside Sierra Leone's secret societies, whose members slice their mouths and spear themselves in mysterious rituals performed in tribute to their gods. The societies play a central role in a number of West African countries, wielding significant influence in politics, culture, and religion.

Thousands of children and young girls were raped last year in Sierra Leone -- a silent epidemic of suffering in one of the world's poorest countries. According to police statistics, recorded cases of sexual and gender-based violence almost doubled last year, reaching 8,505 in a population of 7.5 million, up from 4,750 a year earlier. And of that number, 2,579 cases -- around a third -- involved the rape of a minor. But, as with the incidence of rape in almost every country, this shocking tally is almost certainly an understatement.

Poachers hunt chimpanzees for their meat, farmers shoot them to protect their crops and a lack of political will means their habitat is being surrendered to urban development and forestry

30 Oct 2018  |  phys.org
The article discusses the challenges faced by the Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Sierra Leone, where an increasing number of orphaned chimpanzees are being cared for due to poaching and habitat loss. The sanctuary's founder, Bala Amarasekaran, criticizes the government's lack of action and corruption that has led to widespread construction, logging, and mining, resulting in significant environmental depletion. The WWF's Living Planet report is cited, highlighting the impact of human consumption on wildlife. The article also touches on the broader issues of outdated conservation laws and lack of enforcement in Sierra Leone, as well as efforts by various organizations, including international partners, to combat deforestation and promote sustainable agriculture. The plight of the Western chimpanzee, a critically endangered subspecies, is emphasized, with Sierra Leone being home to a significant portion of the remaining population.
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